“The flu is a serious threat” – Damian Light

Has the Flu Shot been something people have always talked about?

Vaccination against the flu began over 80 years ago partly as an attempt to prevent another massive outbreak of Spanish Flu seen at the end of World War I. Despite what most Kiwi’s experience today, the flu is a serious threat – World Health Organisation estimates the annual death rate at between 250-500,000 people due to the flu.
It’s particularly important that those who are young, elderly or otherwise at high risk ensure they do get vaccinated. It’s not a magic potion that guarantees that you won’t get ill but it gives you a much better chance that you’ll be okay.
– Damian Light, United Future

“…I think it’s an important step in growing up” – Damian Light

How common is it to have flatmates at least one time in our lives?

I think most people will go flatting at some stage, either through choice or necessity. I found it a good experience, moving out of home and having to fend for myself. It also taught me how to deal with people who I weren’t my friends but I had to live with them. Generally I think it’s an important step in growing up and something that I’d encourage everyone to do.
However the sad reality of housing prices in Auckland is that renting as a group is the only way some people can afford to rent. Building up a deposit to buy a house is getting harder everyday which is why UnitedFuture is really keen on rent to buy schemes. To anyone who argues that young people aren’t trying hard enough, they need to remember that we no longer have free university like we used to, adding to the burden of those trying to buy a house. UnitedFuture policy is for truly free tertiary education to overcome this and other issues around student debt.
– Damian Light, United Future

#nzpol Damian Light: Which areas of Auckland do you think we could collaborate well with?

Logically we need to work with our neighbours in Devonport-Takapuna and Upper Harbour. A lot of the challenges and opportunities they face, Kaipātiki faces too.

We also to work with the areas over the bridge – a large number of Kaipātiki residents travel over the bridge for work, education or for entertainment. While our local community has its own flavour, we are part of a bigger community that is Auckland and we need to ensure we’re involved.

-Damian Light, United Future

#nzpol Damian Light: What social change have you seen legislation from Parliament make recently?

I think the most significant one is marriage equality – even though it’s been over a year, the social impact of this is still being seen. While there is still a massive amount of fear and discrimination against those that are different, marriage equality signalled that we’re all equal. It’s forced a lot of people to reset their opinions, especially since the sky has not fallen in. It was a massive step for NZ and one I’m very proud we took.

There is much more to do in this space but legal equality for marriage is a good start.

-Damian Light, United Future