It was with a heavy heart that many of us woke this morning to the news of the tragic hostel accommodation fire in Wellington. We send our deepest sympathy to the loved ones of the deceased, those injured and those that survived unscathed but have lost their home and friends.  We understand there was a sense of community in the Loafers Lodge hotel in Newtown and the impact will be felt by many.

Now is the time to reach out to one another to offer support and care to all affected.

That includes checking on our own.   Our members who will be directly affected by this tragedy include firefighters, 111 emergency call centre dispatchers and risk reduction staff.  Those responding overnight put their lives and wellbeing on the line as they are trained and prepared to do.  It was a mammoth effort in perilous conditions and devastating for all.  The Wellington Local has been working with FENZ management this morning to ensure the appropriate support and care is available.  If anyone has any particular need or request please contact  If the NZPFU can help in any way please let us know.

We appreciate the many messages of support that have come from far and wide.   NZPFU Locals from across the country have sent in messages of support to the Wellington Local to those that responded.  For some the fatal fire has brought back memories including those that responded to the 1995 New Empire Hotel fire in Hamilton where six people perished.

There will be many questions about what happened, how it happened and what systems are in place to prevent such tragedies.  But those questions and issues are not for today. Today we focus on looking after those that need our support.  The other issues will be canvassed by the NZPFU in due course and when it is appropriate to do so.  

Take care, be safe, look after one another. 

In unity,
Wattie Watson
National Secretary

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