New Zealand’s Toughest Town – Updated

This week on Television New Zealand’s Close Up:

“Reporter Jehan Casinader investigates what life is like in one of our toughest towns. Sex for drugs and organised fights – and we’re talking about teenagers. What can be done to help?.”

The show hasn’t even aired yet and no one know what the town is, but read some of the comments that have already been left on the Close Up Facebook page :

Update 18 July: The town was later  named as  Kawerau in the Bay of Plenty. Watch the video here, parental discretion is advised.

Ryan Blundell
“Who really cares where this is? its happening all over the country. I have been overseas for the last two years and since I have returned 6 months ago, I have been very suprised by the amount of street drug dealers that have randomly approached me. I would say about 40% of the times I have been out in Central Auckland I have been approached. One time out henderson i was approached during the day time. I cant recall this ever happening to me in the past. all of them were young, one was only 16!”

Kellee Corness
@Kaye Basset Millar: Bullshit! Out of the 4 kids who used to get regular straps at my school, one is dead, 2 are drug dealers and the other is fried on P. The strap never taught them to respect their elders. Their parents fcked their lives up for them. Adults have a lot to answer for when it comes to troubled youth!!!

Jonathan Rodgers
“reaping what we’ve sown ……this is not just one tough community there are models of this in ever town and city in this country ……….social fail”

Levin was mentioned but here at E2NZ we’re guessing it could be Whangarei.

Read our blog “Kids in New Zealand, the village lets them down” (May 2010)

“Can you believe it? parents and caregivers in Whangarei are said to be organising fights between their kids to sort out petty playground squabbles. We know that Michael Laws called the kids in the far north ‘feral‘ but this really is hard to believe…

Or it could just as easily be Kaitaia, or Gisborne. See “Kaitaia’s Kids’ Drunken Night Of Rampage (April 2010)

Residents of the small Northland town of Kaitaia suffered $10,000 in damages after a ‘group’ of  10 tanked up kids rampaged through the town for three and a hlaf hours on Monday night last week.  Three and a half hours, where were the police at the time?…

The sad truth is that Kaitaia suffers from the same problems that afflict many New Zealand’s socially and economically deprived communities, there are ‘Kaitaias’ all over New Zealand.

Take for example Gisborne, another small town on the mid-east coast of the North Island.  You may wish to read our post from 14 April 2010 “Armed Robbery and Drugs, 80% or more smoke weed in Gisborne” and read some of the comments readers made to the Gisborne Herald about their town’s drug problem…

…But that is just two towns out of the whole of the country! you say, you can’t judge a whole country by that.

But there are too many other places with the same problem for the pattern to ignored.

Places like Huntly, dogged by rampant crime. The small towns of Hawke’s Bay – Napier, Flaxmere and Hastings where in the latter a gang of kids smashed their way through the CBD at 4am. Small villages like Mapua where a brawl over the Easter weekend involving 30 people in the early hours of the morning prompted residents to call for a greater police presence.

There are no signs of it abating either, the once cohesive small towns  that used to be the backbone of  New Zealand are rapidly falling apart, crime and disorder are out of control, drug and alcohol abuse are rife  and the country lacks the resources to stop it…”

Then there’s Porirua where the Midnight Express is getting out and tacking the problem head on, read New Zealand a great place to raise kids? Porirua’s Midnight Express (May 2010)

But as Ryan and Jonathan said –  the toughest town could be  anywhere in New Zealand, we’ll be watching to see what Close Up thinks.

3 thoughts on “New Zealand’s Toughest Town – Updated


    Nearly 1000 people wanted on arrest in the Northland region are evading police.
    These include eight people sought in relation for sex offences and a further 60 for violent offences.
    Small area for that many uncaught criminals to be running around eluding police in.

    Meanwhile, they have a teacher sex scandal.. The school failed to act for three years on a warning by police.. This on the heels of Henry Miki.

    New Zealand has all the same problems many migrants are fleeing from back home. All they are doing is adding new money problems and remoteness to the social problems they already deplore. UK migrants – move to Cornwall or some quiet corner of the UK. All the benefits of the civilised world within a day’s drive, family close enough to visit for holidays, with none of the disadvantages of moving to New Zealand..

  2. Camouflage Fail:

    Public warned about missing murderer – police
    7/09/2011 18:56:00
    Huntly Police are reiterating warnings that the public must not approach convicted murderer Leon Wilson. The 42-year-old is wanted by police for breaching parole conditions and could be anywhere between Huntly and Kaitaia. The Black Power member served 10 years for murdering his partner Leonie Newman, who he stabbed 28 times. Sergeant Blair Donaldson says Wilson should be considered armed and dangerous. Police believe that he is quite unstable at the moment in relation to his behaviour and it also believed to be driving a distinctive blue Ford with the registration plate MAYHEM.

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