Why the media beat up over one couple getting married?
As the ceremony was held with the appropriate permission and with the stated stipulations in force, at their own home with flatmates as witnesses, the only person outside their bubble was the celebrant, and surely her attendance at the appropriate distance from the couple and witnesses was even less of a threat than standing in a supermarket queue.
Anyone who would even ask if the marriage could be overturned by the police should be ashamed of themselves. To the young couple concerned, have a long and happy life together.
Ray Hoy, Riverhead
In Nurse Jenny, we now have another Kiwi to sit alongside the great plastic surgeons Archibald McIndoe and Harold Gillies, acknowledged now as having been significant contributors to the health and wellbeing of the Mother Country.
Of course, unlike the time PM Ted Heath took Britain into Europe, ignoring the contribution of NZ in both world wars, turning his back on the Commonwealth, we'd like to see this latest gesture borne in mind when the new trade deals are negotiated. History would caution us not to hold our breath on that occurring.
David Lee, Papamoa.
Sharing the load
Government employees are paid well in excess of the private sector in safe jobs. Now with about a third of private sector jobs in jeopardy, the Government will be looking around for money to help them. Jacinda has correctly said "we are all in this together". So may I suggest we cut the government employees' salaries and wages by 30 per cent.
Jacinda, who is a caring person, could also mandate the councils do the same, so they can freeze rates or reduce them. I am sure caring government and council employees in safe jobs would have to agree now is the time for them to help out in New Zealand's hour of need, to those less fortunate than themselves.
As Jacinda has correctly said, we are all in this together.
Tom Reynolds, St Heliers.
Skypath housing loss
As someone who has enthusiastically supported the various named Skypath plans I was disgusted to read the new plan, which casually refers to "loss of houses" and grandly explains that seeds from a pohutukawa tree that needs to be removed will be used to plant new ones.
It seems so contrived, backed fully by Generation Zero, who don't even mention it as they suggest via email that supporters submit their agreement to this updated ramp design. As the famous character in The Castle said, "it's not a house , it's a home!" If you feel these historic houses beneath the bridge are worth saving and the inconvenience of stairs and a ramp or alternatives to ensure this plan still goes ahead while the houses remain I suggest you submit your feedback.
Samantha Cunningham, Henderson.
GPs' weekend off too long
There has been much news about making sure we call our GPs without delay about health issues other than Covid-19.
I have been trying to get in contact with someone at my local GP for four days, but they have been closed since Friday.
I was prescribed antibiotics on Wednesday. I knew these antibiotics (Augmentin) probably wouldn't work because I've had this condition before and the antibiotic I was given last time worked and was not Augmentin. I asked the GP on Wednesday twice to look back at my notes to see what I was given last time but she insisted on Augmentin. Today [Monday] my condition is even worse (I've been taking Augmentin this whole time). I phoned after hours and they told me to go to Urgent Care if I'm worried or wait to call my GP when they are open. The problem with Urgent Care is they can't access my file to see the antibiotic that works and as the doctor on Wednesday got it so wrong I am scared of being prescribed the wrong thing again so have decided to wait.
Until then, I can't walk around, have a fever because I clearly have an infection and the only relief I am getting is by sitting in a hot bath, which I have been doing several times a day for the past three days.
I am annoyed that there is all this talk to get in touch with GPs but they are actually having a very long weekend — fair enough, it's Easter but the system should allow access to files when they are unavailable. Four days is too long.
The condition I have means I could end up in hospital having surgery (this happened the first time I had this) if it is not dealt with correctly and in a timely fashion so I am pretty scared right now.
Katrina (details withheld).
Loss of democracy
Approaching three weeks in the lockdown and the predicted "up to 40,000 victims of C-19" the public were threatened with are nowhere to be seen.
But under the guise of "protecting the population" we have seen our civil liberties eroded like nothing ever seen in NZ democracy.
The Leader of the Opposition has been silenced by offering him a place "inside the tent". We have police blockages of holiday roads and beaches. People are being encouraged to become "informers" for the police where a neighbour has perceived breaking of the rules.
Our hospitals are empty awaiting the C-19 hordes to flood in. Accident and Emergency wards are empty. Surely the hospitals' C-19 needs could have been assessed on a weekly basis, and other patients admitted accordingly.
With the evidence of lack of hospital admissions the lockdown should be over after week three.
This lockdown has allowed not only the erosion of civil liberties, but people are being locked up at home with abusive family members. Others are devastated by the collapse of their business.
Are the only people whose lives matter the prospective C-19 sufferers?
Roads are being turned into cycleways.
Yet there has been no discussion of the costs and all debate on issues has been silenced. There has been no word of any protest from the Opposition.
This situation of the police state and undebated government control must not be allowed to continue. People must wake up and take notice of what is happening before the Government and police take any more powers under C-19 and our democracy is a thing of the past.
Raewyn Tremaine, West Harbour.
Mental health failures
For those of us who petitioned, submitted, pleaded or clamoured for a transformation of our nationwide mental health service provision and delivery, the prospect of a fresh, courageously expedient perspective from a Government we entrusted to discharge its policies with integrity, steadfast intent and goodwill, could not be more welcome.
To date the desperately needed radical revisions we were promised have failed to materialise, nor are they imminent.
The political subterfuge engendering imprudent appointments (e.g. director of the Suicide Prevention Office) can be redressed; misdirected, hastily initiated processes (e.g. Mental Health Commission Team to investigate the need for a Mental Health Commission) can be curtailed.
It is time for implementation of the needs of the nation to be realised.
V.H. Markham, Dunedin.
In her opinion piece (April 13) about development aid being "turned off during lockdown", I feel Josie Pagani overstates her case by saying "charities can't fundraise and the public can't donate".
First of all, the great majority of the Council for International Development's member organisations have websites and simple ways of making a donation, and these same organisations will have mailing lists and other ways of engaging online with their supporters.
For some reason, the CID website does not seem to have a donation portal, though it encourages people to sign up for its newsletter. Despite our country being in lockdown, my inbox is crowded with messages from organisations and charities seeking donations.
The work that CID's members do is amazing and deserves our support. The bigger problem is the sudden loss of discretionary income as thousands of families and individuals suffer loss of income and hardship in these difficult days. There is no doubt charities will suffer for some time and perhaps this year might be a time when, as Pagani suggests, new forms of collaboration between the plethora of charities in this country can be explored and new ways of engaging with supporters and the public developed.
Ian Dally, Mt Albert.
Short & sweet
Our Government wants to widen our footpaths, which will result in narrower roads. Why don't we just put the cars on the footpath and turn the road over to pedestrians, bikes, and scooters?
Keith Berman, Remuera.
Thank you for not publishing my letter of March 29 praising Mike Hosking for his more balanced view on the coronavirus. I note he has reverted to his standard, "I completely understand the situation, I could fix it and every thing the Government is doing, is wrong".
Owen Cunliffe, New Lynn.
On caged hens
In terms of Covid-19 alert level 4, I promise to never buy a caged hen egg ever again.
Neil Hatfull, Warkworth.
Sounds like level 3 is just level 4 lockdown lite.
I sense from the PM we are going to be tied up in knots for many months in the private sector.
Jim Stanborough, St Johns.
Spare a thought for the family dog whose world has suddenly been one of attention and walks during our lockdown. Sadly, when this crisis is under control many dogs will go back to bleak lives in solitude, sometimes for an entire day, and worse still, not be walked because families have returned to activities deemed more important.
Judy Morley-Hall, St Johns.