Dunedin: University students into excess alcohol, party drugs, sexual abuse, vandalism #CRIME

SEND IN YOUR SONS AND DAUGHTERS ???

Received from Jeff Dickie
Tue, 3 Nov 2015 at 2:16 p.m.

Subject: Singapore letter declined by ODT

On Sunday, 1 November 2015 1:22 PM, Jeff Dickie wrote:

Your newspaper’s images of couch burning and civil disorder become quite focused when viewed from a distance. It is absolutely clear none of the parties that showed a flurry of interest earlier in the year, when poor behaviour was exposed on national media, have any wish to solve it. There followed a cynical exercise in public relations damage control rather than any real effort to solve the problem behaviour of a very small minority. It begs the question why? The university clearly tacitly supports the party image to get bums on seats. The DCC doesn’t know what to do. As a regular visitor to Singapore where alcohol is available 24/7, I have never once seen any such behaviour. The solution is obvious.

JEFF DICKIE
ORCHARD ROAD
SINGAPORE

Woodhaugh
Dunedin

All Black win – any excuse
Video stills via Stuff.co.nz (published 1.11.15)

Student fire at Castle Street 31.10.15 Student fire at Castle Street 31.10.15 Stuff: Dunedin students celebrate Rugby World Cup win by torching couches

Related Post and Comments:
● 1.11.15 University of Otago student mayhem continues, another LOSS for Harls
7.10.15 University blues, connected ?
18.8.15 Dunedin authorities blame SUNSHINE #tui
● 26.6.15 University of Otago flyover #partyville
30.5.15 ‘Captive market for addiction maybe or scapegoats?’ asks Otago student
26.5.15 Student involvement in Dunedin drinking culture
17.5.15 Social media messages after Sunday TVNZ (10 May)
12.5.15 View Street, seen from Moray Place
11.5.15 Don’t for Chrissakes play down effects of liquor barons #DUD
11.5.15 Aftermath of Sunday TVNZ on ‘Party Central’
● 8.5.15 Sunday TVNZ #Dunedin —10 May TV1 at 7:00 pm
2.4.15 University rolls down, Harlene not the only problem….
28.3.15 University of Otago landscaping
22.3.15 University of Otago: More national and global publicity #HydeStreet
18.2.15 University of Otago: Toga Party 2015 #video
16.2.15 University of Otago can’t beat broadcast news and social media #image
● 11.11.14 Dunedin’s draft local alcohol policy (Lap) —submissions, real story….
8.5.14 Student Proof Carpet – New Zealand #video
15.2.14 University of Otago: Starter questions for Harlene
10.2.14 University of Otago major sponsor for Highlanders
9.1.14 Facadism: … University of Otago warps Castle Street
19.8.13 Cull on senility (firing up graduates)
24.7.13 University: Leith flood protection scheme and landscaping
31.5.13 University of Otago development plans
25.3.13 UoO: NEGATIVE PRESS: Weekly disorder in Dunedin campus area
20.2.12 University of Otago student orientation
17.2.12 Salvation Army: The Growing Divide
17.12.11 Stadium + Cull love = University of Otago + OUSA party
23.11.11 Judge Oke Blaikie finally said it
9.11.11 DCC has PR problem

LadyGagaVEVO Published on Sep 17, 2015
Lady Gaga – Til It Happens To You
A portion of proceeds from the sale of the song will be donated to organizations helping survivors of sexual assault.
“Til It Happens To You” written by Diane Warren and Lady Gaga; performed by Lady Gaga, from the film THE HUNTING GROUND.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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85 Comments

Filed under Business, DCC, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Events, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Police, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Tourism, Town planning, University of Otago, Urban design, What stadium

85 responses to “Dunedin: University students into excess alcohol, party drugs, sexual abuse, vandalism #CRIME

  1. Ralphy

    Where the hell was the police presence to prevent all this? It was obvious this was going to happen – Something tells me the cops and firefighters actually love all this mayhem. Justifies their existence and makes them look like super heroes! Not in my eyes – They’re a pointless presence – allowing the lunatics to run the asylum in Nth Dunedin, where they have no respect for anything other than their own selfish drunken jackass antics.

    Someone’s clearly got to get seriously injured or die first. Wouldn’t mind betting they have already and it’s all been hushed-up some more as they also like to do.

  2. Elizabeth

    If it’s happening at schools….
    We know it’s much easier to carry out the same CRIMINAL activity in the tertiary study environment, without parental guidance or other supervision.

    YEAH RIGHT —-Police would not comment on the case but said: “We take all allegations of sexual misconduct and assault very seriously and investigate them appropriately.”

    ### NZ Herald Online 5:00 AM Sunday Nov 8, 2015
    Warnings for Roast Busters II
    By Lynley Bilby – Herald on Sunday
    Police have let school boys off with warnings after they performed lewd acts on drunk girls and posted pictures online. The case involved senior boys from an unnamed New Zealand secondary school plying young girls with alcohol and recording sexually degrading acts, before uploading the images to a private Facebook page. New Zealand Secondary Principals’ Association executive member Patrick Walsh, chairman of a high-powered Government group to counter cyber-bullying among school students, is dismayed no one was prosecuted.
    Read more

    Related Post and Comments:
    1.11.15 University of Otago student mayhem continues, another LOSS for Harls

  3. Hype O'Thermia

    Time Travel Invented In NZ!
    Clear evidence of sexual crimes against women. Back in the good (for men) old days “she was wearing a short skirt” and other “she was asking for it” reasons were sufficient to deter women from laying complaints, because men had no option other than obey their urges. And if a woman had any previous record of sexual activity outside marriage this was further proof that she was fair game.
    Drunk? She was asking for it, and men can’t be expected to control their impulses – can they? Police can’t be expected to take action against young men doing what comes naturally (to young men for whom cruelty and total lack of empathy are natural) – can they?

    Welcome to the Good Old Days. Next step, restoring to employers and men in power the right to sexually abuse women.

    Note: this is NOT the Great Leap Backwards advocated by the McGillilcuddy Serious Party. This comes from a different political attitude altogether.

    • Elizabeth

      Sadly, any sweet(?) young thing balancing on 6-inch heels and a skirt so short her crack, G-string or more is showing – as inhabit George St and Octagon some nights – if alone, in a pair, or a group of similarly clad young women, doesn’t think she’s fair game at a venue for finger fucking by the young men…. or in the market in some way, well…. this is SO not just a male problem, I assure you. Invite you to read Yik Yak and other social media sites. It’s all on, baby!

      • Hype O'Thermia

        Lack of ability to consent isn’t consent.
        Stupidity by one party isn’t an excuse, nor is intellectual handicap, though for years mentally handicapped people were regarded as fair game by the “sex-entitled” type of man.

        I agree that women should use their brains even when not engaged in academic work. But when they don’t they deserve the same protection in law as intellectually handicapped people.

        Imagine the response if the photos showed abuse of residents in “sheltered accommodation”.

        • Hype O'Thermia

          Besides, being “brainy” ie able to do academic courses, isn’t the same as having commonsense, street smarts, survival instinct. In some ways their backgrounds have often sheltered them to a point where they had no need or opportunity to learn how to negotiate grown-up life safely.
          Add to that the messages that girls can do anything boys can do including drinking the same quantity of alcohol, and they have Rights.

          This is a story of John O’Day
          Who died maintaining his right of way
          He was right, dead right, as he sailed along
          But he’s just as dead as if he were wrong.

        • Elizabeth

          Imagine if as they report of themselves, they (the young women) went out to see how many different conquests they could get in a night. These differ a little from drunk or drugged states followed by assault. Both approaches to ‘brainlessness’ are operating sometimes simultaneously in the same venues and peer groups. Which is which. Dunedin, STD City.

  4. Elizabeth

    The Independent Police Conduct Authority report into the Roastbusters case said police let those victims down.

    Schools, cyber safety groups and the Government (through its recent Harmful Digital Communications Act) are trying to do the right thing.

    ### ODT Online Sat, 14 Nov 2015
    Editorial: Unhealthy sexual culture embedded
    OPINION The more things change, the more they stay the same. That is the only conclusion that can be drawn from the latest case of sexual exploitation of girls by schoolboys. The case reportedly involved senior boys from an unnamed secondary school who got girls drunk before performing indecent acts on them, photographing the activity, and posting the pictures online.
    Read more

  5. Elizabeth

    Sexually transmitted infections, unplanned pregnancy, sexual violence and abuse and bullying in sexual relationships were significant concerns for young people. –Dr Sarah Martin

    ### radionz.co.nz Sunday 15 November  -  8:55 pm NZT
    RNZ News
    Doctors call for better sexual health services
    The Royal Australasian College of Physicians is calling for better access to sexual and reproductive care for adolescents and young adults. The college said a 2012 survey showed nearly a quarter of New Zealand students were having sex, but fewer than half always used condoms. It wanted the government to listen to their recommendations for better health services that are affordable, available, accurate, and based on evidence.
    The organisation’s spokeswoman for sexual health Anne Robertson said there was a lack of continuity of information for young people. The college said there was a need for information, education and clinical care that supported healthy sexual development and informed choices. The recommendations included specific services for people who may face increased discrimination or vulnerability.
    Read more

  6. Elizabeth

    ### ODT Online Mon, 16 Nov 2015
    Drugs, cash seized in Dunedin raids
    Two young men were arrested and cash and drugs, including ecstasy and cocaine, were seized in raids across Dunedin today. Police and New Zealand Customs officials conducted multiple warrants as part of ‘Operation Albany’ which is targeting the importation of Class ‘A’ and ‘B’ drugs by students. Two 23 year-old males have been charged with importation offences and are due to appear in the Dunedin District Court tomorrow.
    Read more

  7. Hype O'Thermia

    Prepare the moist bus ticket.
    They’re bound to have wonderful futures ahead of them that require travel, and convicting them would be awf’ly mean. How are people of mere 23 years supposed to guess that doing crimes may result in unpleasant consequences?

  8. Elizabeth

    Yep, Hype – the old name suppression trick for our golden youth….. Oh, a spot of low cunning, ODT isn’t running the news item online.

    ODT 18.11.15 Drug raid students bailed p6

  9. Elizabeth

    ### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 11:22, December 8 2015
    Dunedin student drug selling accused named
    By Hamish McNeilly
    A Dunedin student accused of selling drugs has been named. Jakan Baigent McConnell, of Newstead, Waikato, did not appear in the Dunedin District Court on Tuesday morning. […] The 22 year old faces two new charges – supplying ecstasy and selling cannabis – in addition to two charges of supplying MDMA.
    Read more

    ● Another student faces more than a dozen charges, including importing MDMA and possessing cocaine for supply.

  10. Elizabeth

    ### ODT Online Wed, 9 Dec 2015
    Students face further drug charges
    One of two Dunedin students accused of importing drugs is now facing another 13 charges, almost all of them with a maximum penalty of life imprisonment. The 25-year-old, whose name remains suppressed, yesterday had his case adjourned until early next year by a Dunedin District Court registrar.
    Read more

  11. Elizabeth

    Restriction in place between 6pm and 1am, on Wednesday, February 24, and Friday, February 26.

    ### ODT Online Sat, 6 Feb 2016
    Liquor ban to surround stadium
    By Shawn McAvinue
    Dunedin students will be welcomed back to the city with a liquor ban that the University of Otago hopes becomes a permanent feature of Orientation Week. Dunedin City Council liquor licensing co-ordinator Kevin Mechen said the council had adopted a temporary alcohol restriction for the “three big nights of Orientation” at Forsyth Barr Stadium.
    Read more

  12. Elizabeth

    Harls’ party animals are BACK + warm weather
    = CRIME, DISORDER AND PESTILENCE

    ### ODT Online Sat, 20 Feb 2016
    Fires, arrests overnight in Dunedin
    By Rhys Chamberlain
    Police have stepped up patrols in the student quarter after two couch fires on Castle St overnight and two arrests for disorderly behaviour. A Fire Service communications spokesman said a fire on Castle St Nth between Howe St and Duke St in the “middle of the road” was being treated as suspicious as it was deliberately lit. A second fire “just down the road”, 10 minutes later, was being treated the same way.
    Read more

  13. Elizabeth

    ### dunedintv.co.nz Mon, 22 Feb 2016
    Houses trashed in student quarter
    Vandals have trashed three homes in the student quarter, where firefighters have also been dealing with two couch fires. Houses in Leith St North and Castle St were damaged over the weekend as vandals smashed windows, punched holes in walls, ransacked rooms and stole beer. A door was ripped off a dryer, a television and printer were thrown against walls and cables were snapped off electronic gear.
    Two couch fires in Castle St are being investigated, and police have also arrested two young Dunedin men for disorderly behaviour in the area.
    The incidents coincide with the return of tertiary students to the city and police are stepping up their presence around campus.
    Ch39 Link [no video available]

  14. Elizabeth

    More piffle from the Editor

    24.2.16 ODT: Editorial Scarfies, Dunedin welcomes you
    OPINION If ever a city successfully meshed town and gown it would be Dunedin. […] Tertiary education is something every Dunedin child can see, in the buildings, people, culture and conversations within the tertiary quarter and the city as a whole. In other centres such a clear and visible beacon of higher achievement can be far harder to spot.
    http://www.odt.co.nz/opinion/editorial/374151/scarfies-dunedin-welcomes-you

    A shallow mention of “students behaving badly” but a BIG downplay of their adverse effects (extremely difficult to mitigate) on quiet residential streets as the tertiary campus spreads into City Rise with little or no targeted planning controls or regulation.

  15. Elizabeth

    See images at post (top of thread) —
    DIMWITS OF UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO STRIKE AGAIN, HARLS

    ### ODT Online Sun, 28 Feb 2016
    House fire caused by burning couch
    [Police] Officers were called to a large party on Castle Street at midnight, where several hundred party-goers at two houses were spilling on to the road. While containing the crowd, attending officers saw a fire at the back of a different house, and found the flames from a burning couch had spread to the home’s weatherboards. Police said the occupants were woken and evacuated, and the officers attempted to extinguish the flames before the fire service arrived to put the fire out.
    Read more

    • Hype O'Thermia

      Maybe it wasn’t students.
      But it’s years of “students will be students” and “they have to have some fun after all that hard studying” and “it’s our Cultchure” that has allowed this behaviour to get to a point where it attracts schoolkids and hoons and loons and ratbags, alcohol fueled to the eyebrows plus any other mind-altering substances that happen to be available on the day – night. Indistinguishable by dress or manner from the Brightest and Best, they arrive from all over the city. “The student area – that’s where it’s all happening!” And unlike furniture-burning outside their own homes, there’s little to no chance of being caught let alone convicted of anything.

      Should have cracked down on it years ago, Harls & Co. There was time when it was stoppable, if authorities hadn’t been so keen to be friends instead of afraid of being the mean grown-ups.
      And you’re dealing with young people, many of whose own parents were afraid of being parents in case their kids wouldn’t love them – they felt they had to court popularity from their own children by never setting unpopular rules and sticking by them.
      Going to the Hyde Street party and being their friend isn’t your role. When they blurt out “I hate you!” you’ll know you’re on the right track at last. They’ll get over it.
      Letting things keep on the way they’re going, someone and their parents and friends will never get over what happens.
      Isn’t preventing tragedy worth being hard bastards for?

  16. Elizabeth

    ### radionz.co.nz Updated at 6:20 pm on 28 February 2016
    Couch burners unwelcome – Dunedin mayor
    People in Dunedin live in fear of a couch fire spreading to nearby houses, according to the city’s mayor, Dave Cull. A couch set on fire in the student flat area of Castle St last night quickly spread to an exterior wall and the house had to be evacuated. […] Mr Cull said the practice of couch burning was stupid. “This is what the community has been fearing all along … sooner or later a couch fire spreads to a house and someone will get hurt or killed. The kind of people that light couch fires in these circumstances are not welcome in Dunedin.”
    Read more

    ### radionz.co.nz Updated at 7:53 am 29 February 2016
    Scarfies who burn couches ‘take risks with their futures’
    By Catherine Hutton
    Dunedin’s mayor is defending a group set up last year to improve behaviour in the city’s student area, despite a house fire sparked by couch burning. The fire in the early hours of Sunday morning spread rapidly to Castle Street house from a burning couch outside the flat. The house had to be evacuated. […] In May last year, Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull called together a group of interested parties to talk about the behaviour in North Dunedin. The Dunedin North Issues Group wanted to change the attitudes prevalent in North Dunedin, re-establish pride in the area and keep young people safe. Mr Cull said following that group’s discussion, the University of Otago and council were taking a much tougher stance against those who flouted the law. But at the same time more infill housing and new townhouses had increased the fire risk in the area, he said.
    Read more

    ****

    Mayor Cull is inventing stuff.
    His so-called group that he mentions may have met only once to sign a document of campaign – but we understand it has not met since the TVNZ Sunday programme about scarfie trouble aired on 10 May 2015.
    We do know a local multi-member resident organisation was Not treated as a “stakeholder” and was rebuffed by Cull when it properly sought to have representation on the “group”.

    RNZ is checking!

    ****

    Links to Videos at Sunday TVNZ.
    [related posts and comments, enter *sunday tvnz* in the search box at right]

    Party Central
    8:00PM Sunday May 10, 2015
    Dunedin is famed for its Victorian architecture and Otago University’s world-class academia – but the drinking culture has some residents at breaking point.
    http://tvnz.co.nz/sunday-news/party-central-video-6310710

    Dunedin residents at breaking point
    11:28AM Sunday May 10, 2015
    Excessive drinking, noise, destructive behaviour, vomiting, urinating and even defecating in the street – Dunedin residents say they have had enough.
    http://tvnz.co.nz/sunday-news/dunedin-residents-breaking-point-video-6310491

    Dunedin student hovel: ‘How do you live like this?’
    3:12PM Thursday May 07, 2015
    Inside what could be the country’s worst student flat with Sunday’s Libby Middlebrook.
    http://tvnz.co.nz/sunday-news/dunedin-student-hovel-do-you-live-like-video-6309030http://tvnz.co.nz/sunday-news/dunedin-student-hovel-do-you-live-like-video-6309030

    Post: 8.5.14 Student Proof Carpet – New Zealand #video

  17. Elizabeth

    Re: The Dunedin North Issues Group

    Related Post:
    7.9.15 Super Dave #DUD #CityRiseUp

    As published previously by What if? Dunedin: [click to enlarge]

    Dunedin North Issues 11.5.15 [screenshots] 1Dunedin North Issues 11.5.15 [screenshots]

  18. Elizabeth

    Hardly surprising.
    Many of us termed the Otago campus area “the student ghetto” years ago, disgusted by substandard new builds (it still goes on!), running down existing housing stock much of which is sustainable (same!), and the complete lack of planning for “community wellbeing” and lack of standards to encourage the continuance of mixed community there – as practised by Dunedin City Council and the University of Otago. Exacerbated by bank lending and the mindset of cashcow landlords (hoovering up student loans direct from central government) – many of whom were recently students themselves (reference the awesomely negligent history of 100% mortgages and other slidefalls in cycle).

    Nor do we have any sort of convincing leader in the vice-chancellor Harlene Hayne (I love the word vice for that position), or astute leadership coming from the woolly BCom-led University Council. This in the face of contemptible behaviour by students and non-students.

    Stewardship of “wellbeing”, “community” and “public amenity” is almost completely lacking as a parallel drive to rent take in the Tertiary Campus Area which now extends from Dunedin North to Northeast Valley and into City Rise.

    It’s also what happens when a city led by successive derelict councils fails to make it easy for business diversification and merely hops into bed with an old-fashioned, behind-the-times academy – the University of Otago – as the mainstay business in town. It was ever crap.

    How many overseas examples do we need to realise the extent of the problem here – ghettoisation.
    Here it’s hands-off and what’s your problem. And actually, if you’re walking alone in the hood, I’m going to tell you I want to rape you whether or not I have the balls to do it. Just so you know.

    “This is not another letter about couch burning or broken glass, or piles of vomit in the street …. I’m afraid it is much more serious.”

    ### ODT Online Tue, 1 Mar 2016
    Abuse spikes in student quarter
    By Carla Green
    ….Otago bioethics PhD candidate Emma Tumilty co-signed a letter with 10 other people who live and work in the area, calling on university vice-chancellor Prof Harlene Hayne to act. The problem, the letter says, is an “unacceptable and insidious” level of harassment in the student quarter, including “racist speech/slurs, street harassment towards women and trans and homophobia”.
    Read more

    The letter (via ODT and Critic)

    29th February 2016

    Tena koe Prof. Hayne,

    Re: Compulsory Courses in Respect, Consent and Sexual Health for all new Undergraduate Students

    We write to you as citizens of Dunedin who attend, live, or work near or at university. The joys of youth, especially when first unleashed from the parental home are bountiful and chaotic. This we understand. We understand the impulse for students to go out and experience the lack of limits on their actions and the need to socialise, and test themselves in their new setting. These are all things we also did.

    This is not another letter about couch burning or broken glass, or piles of vomit in the street. I’m afraid it is much more serious. Within the past week alone1 the incidences of racist speech/slurs, street harassment towards women (including a threat of rape in the middle of the street, a woman being chased at 8pm at night, to name just two) and trans- and homophobia have been shocking. Some of these have been formally reported, some of the victims of these attacks felt “what was the point” in reporting them, given they could only identify the perpetrators as young, drunk, students.

    We find this unacceptable and insidious. We worry how men who feel entitled to approach unfamiliar women to harass them in the street during daylight, treat young women undergraduates behind closed doors. We wonder how students who spew forth hate will grow up to be responsible, respectful citizens in our society and we feel the university not only has a role, but a responsibility in addressing this. We find tolerance for such behaviour (“boys will be boys”, “it’s just O-Week”, etc.) the valuing of some peoples’ fun over others’ safety and wellbeing, absolutely unacceptable.

    We are proud of a University that is recognised nationally and internationally for its excellence and innovation, as well as its recent recognition for its inclusiveness. We feel that to ensure that inclusiveness is robust across the University, the University needs to take proactive and innovative steps. Yes, we recognise that not all undergraduates can be lumped together, but we also recognise that a majority culture does rule. We also acknowledge for many of these new students arriving exposure to respectful discourses has been lacking.

    We suggest that the university designs and makes a COMPULSORY workshop series for ALL new undergraduate students. This workshop series should cover: sexual health (general), sexual consent

    1

    Which is not to say that these things haven’t happened in previous orientation weeks or indeed throughout the year, with anecdotes being shared of violence towards gay couples walking down the street at night past student groups, as well as racist heckling and other abusive behaviour both at night and during the day.

    and rape culture; LGBTQ awareness; cultural awareness; disability awareness; and information on what to do when you feel unsafe.

    This would embed appropriate values, we as a university and society wish to uphold in Dunedin, as well as promoting self-care. It would set us apart nationally from other universities (although not internationally where some forward-thinking universities already have some of these) and help us support young adults to become respectful, thoughtful citizens of New Zealand. In addition, throughout the year events to support this form of awareness and respect should be actively developed and promoted.

    We look forward to your response in addressing, what we can only imagine you, too, find frightening, disgusting, and unacceptable.

    Nāku iti noa, nā
    Emma Tumilty Lolene Pepers Devon Smith Philippa Clarke
    Kerry Adams Rae Hickey Jasmin Lamorie Carolyn Levy
    Kathryn McAuley Georgina Richardson Nathan Forbes

    Cc: ODT and Critic

    ****

    ### radionz.co.nz Tue, 1 Mar 2016
    Nine to Noon with Kathryn Ryan
    Calls for action over Dunedin abuse

    9:22 AM. 11 people have signed an open letter to Otago University’s Vice Chancellor Harlene Hayne, calling for action over abuse including a threat of rape, as well as racist and homophobic slurs by drunk students.
    Audio | Download: Ogg  MP3 ( 22′ 57″ )

    • Elizabeth

      ### radionz.co.nz Tue, 1 Mar 2016
      Nine to Noon with Kathryn Ryan
      More feedback on drunken street abuse in Dunedin

      11:05 AM. 11 people have signed an open letter to Otago University’s Vice Chancellor Harlene Hayne, calling for action over threatening language and drunk slurs by male students. They say there is an implicit tolerance of this behaviour – the view that its just orientation week and that ‘boys will be boys’.
      Audio | Download: OggMP3 (5′ 52″)

      • Hype O'Thermia

        Did you notice mention of “misogynistic flat names”? Landlord / property manager approved? What’s the DCC’s attitude to offensive placards in public view?

        • Elizabeth

          Hype, do remember deskhugging is a specialist sport indulged in by City Planning. What placards. What signs. Us do enforcement, what enforcement? Hang on, I’m putting you through to Mayor Cull…………….. *elevator music*

    • Elizabeth

      Harlene Hayne’s comments in this audio are mostly SHAMEFUL and SLITHERING (away from any practical form of responsibility taking).

      I think she needs a job in international relief, pitching in at the most desperate and depraved end possible – to learn humility and rational empathy.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        “Hey it’s not all bad, OU has a Proctor! Yay for us!”
        Nice one Harlene. Now onto more serious matters – how do you feel about Taylor Swift’s new hairdo?

      • Hype O'Thermia

        Oh SUPER – OU’s profile rises yet further : http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/education/77422829/otago-uni-to-teach-students-respect-after-unacceptable-sexual-harassment

        Stuff isn’t taking the risk of people writing unwelcome opinions – no comments allowed.

        They cover the same as ODT – the frantic sense of urgency with which Harlene is tackling the disgrace:

        “In response, vice-chancellor Professor Harlene Hayne​, said the university was developing two educational programmes for students.
        The first would start in the second semester and focus on students in colleges and halls of residence who would be moving into flats next year.
        “I have no tolerance for verbal abuse of students, or other members of our university community,” Hayne said…………

        “It is unacceptable behaviour in any community, and we will play our part in helping all of our students to work toward a culture of mutual respect . . . ”

        {{Note the gentleness – play our part, help to work towards…. soothing massage with scented oils instead of fast response arse-kicking out of town}}

        “The second programme would be for the start of next year as part of an education programme around orientation week.”

        Having noticed how quickly furniture burning became “our culltchure” and crackdowns on appalling behaviour became “attempts to destroy the unique Dunedin experience” I’d like to see a bit less procrastination, a lot more harden up and earn your salary by doing the hard-work part of the job.

    • Diane Yeldon

      Well said, Elizabeth. Just had a similar go at ODT online. Wonder if they will print it. Will paste it here just in case. (Begins) There are no doubt multiple causes but the problems in the student quarter can be, at least partly, attributed to a city planning failure. Great architect, Frank Lloyd Wright said he could design a house that would result in a couple divorcing in a year. Similarly Jane Jacobs wrote about the social impact of city planning.

      The Dunedin ‘student quarter’ has been allowed to become a student ghetto, in the worst sense of the word. Because of the lack of mixed use – all age groups and all professions – the domination by the young and inexperienced, packed in by greedy landlords and a foolish city planning strategy which aids and abets the eventual creation of ‘pod city’ where students are just about vertically stacked for maximum profit, behaviour which would never be tolerated in a different environment becomes the norm. Young people are easily influenced, good at imitating one another and then going one better (or worse) than their foolish peers to show off. Good times and student fun have become a nightmare for the non-participants in dangerous stupidity. The best way IMO to turn the tide is to have a planning strategy for the city which requires the same residential density in all zones as that currently in force in the designated residential zones. There is no reason for increased residential density in the inner city – unless Dunedin wants to permanently compromise its quality of life, to say nothing of its built heritage, for the sake of the transient profit of a few. Even they will not be able to continue to make a profit if their activities are permitted to continue by the city council. It’s a foolish bird that fouls its own nest and a foolish council, looking only at short-term profits, that allows the killing of the goose that is laying Dunedin’s golden egg. That is, a really safe, positive and enjoyable educational environment for all ages.

      {Link: http://www.odt.co.nz/campus/university-otago/374896/abuse-student-quarter#comment-81300 -Eds}

  19. Elizabeth

    Because the [University] Hyde St camera was filming in a public place, students were not required to be notified it had been installed.

    ### ODT Online Wed, 2 Mar 2016
    More cameras planned for student quarter
    By Vaughan Elder
    Surveillance cameras could be dotted around the North Dunedin student area to prevent disorder if a University of Otago plan is adopted. Deputy proctor Andy Ferguson said yesterday the university hoped the Dunedin City Council and police would agree to a proposal to put up cameras in campus streets to deter dangerous and antisocial behaviour, such as lighting fires. This comes after the university installed a camera on one of its buildings last month and pointed it down Hyde St.
    Read more

    ****

    This comment is strong evidence that Mayor Cull’s idiot “Dunedin North Issues Group” WHICH NEVER MEETS…. is completely hands off, incompetent and ineffectual. DCC is doing nothing to protect North End businesses from continual obnoxious student behaviour. NOTHING.

    Not enough
    Submitted by tizeye on Wed, 02/03/2016 – 8:32am.

    We run a motel on George Street and we are sick to death of the behaviour of the students. They tip over wheelie bins, use our gardens as toilets, steal and vandalise our property.
    We are having to install security cameras to try and deter them from turning our property into a tip site.
    The noise as they crank up their stereos is another matter, it is like they are in some kind of sound off competition each trying to be louder than the other. We have guests complaining in the early hours of the morning that they can’t sleep because of the noise but there is nothing we can do about it.
    We ring noise control and campus watch but it makes no difference because they are overwhelmed by the sheer numbers.
    Something needs to be done as the city should not be ruled by a bunch of drunken louts who are treated with kid gloves by the police and the university.
    It is embarrassing to have people from other countries staying with us and them having to witness this appalling behaviour. Why should we have to make excuses when the people who are supposed to control the situation do next to nothing?

    • Hype O'Thermia

      Superb for raising the profile of Dunedin as a tourist destination. I can just see it on facebook, a couple of stunning photos accompanied by vivid accounts of the hell-nights that left them too tired to really make the most of their time here, and their relief at leaving our city for somewhere they could get a night’s sleep, away from the feral students at Otago University who are, apparently, so powerful that no authority can impose socially accepted limits on them.

  20. Elizabeth

    Lost a good one.

    ### dunedintv.co.nz Thu, 3 Mar 2016
    Proctor resigns after four months
    The University of Otago proctor has resigned after just four months in the role. Dave Miller took up the position at the end of October, replacing Simon Thompson who retired. Miller previously worked for the Ministry of Justice as the service delivery manager for Otago and South Canterbury courts. He’s going back to the justice sector, saying he’s accepted a fantastic opportunity but leaves the university with regret. The proctor’s not giving interviews and a university spokesperson says staff are sorry to see him go. He’ll finish at the end of April, and the process to recruit a replacement will begin soon.
    Ch39 Video

    ODT: Landlords keeping watch in student quarter
    An online poll conducted by the Otago University Students’ Association was split between support and condemnation of expanded surveillance.

  21. Elizabeth

    HOW STUPID DO THEY GET – STUDENT MORONS ALL

    People fell 3m onto the ground and collapsed decking landed on people in the courtyard area below.

    ### ODT Online Fri, 4 Mar 2016
    Balcony collapses on Castle St
    Seventeen people were taken to hospital after a balcony collapsed in Dunedin during a concert by the band Six60. […] Students had packed surrounding balconies as the band played a gig near their old flat at 660 Castle St. […] Police estimated approximately 1500 people had gathered in a relatively small area. They, along with Campus Watch, were attempting to clear people from roofs and reduce the people on balconies when the balcony collapsed.
    Read more

    • Callum

      Love that “HOW STUPID DO THEY GET – STUDENT MORONS ALL”!

      I wouldn’t be surprised if it is one of those poorly designed homes with the leaking problem. I saw a photo of what the place looked like after the party and it just looks like f***ing trash! Man those students have no respect for their place at all.

      It’s a shame that the proctor is leaving. I actually thought he did a great job in tackling that guy who was causing trouble during O-week.

      • Elizabeth

        I was a trace harsh – but students end masses (1500) and overloading structures and roofs needs their heads read given the inevitable.

        Well, Callum. I suspect the building owners will be investigated along with their building.

        Agree – losing this particular proctor is a total shame. He came with the right attitude, connnections, experience and people skills. Hopefully his replacement will have similar.

        ### ODT Online Sat, 5 Mar 2016
        Students say 30 jumping on balcony
        By Carla Green
        Students say there were about 30 people jumping up and down on a Castle St balcony just before it collapsed, seriously injuring two people, at concert in Dunedin. Eighteen people were taken Dunedin Hospital’s emergency department last night after the incident at a block of flats at 598 Castle St, where police estimate 1500 people were watching Six60 perform.
        Read more + Video

        ODT: ‘Crack’ like tree falling: witness
        “The balcony was quite small, and appeared to have no supporting structure.”

  22. Hype O'Thermia

    What are the odds on the landlord being hauled over the coals for unsafe balcony on rental property?

  23. Elizabeth

    See ghetto student accommodation at 598 Castle Street, Dunedin before JUMPING episode (advert):

    Mana Property Management Ltd. Published on Jul 28, 2015
    Rental Properties in Dunedin: 598 Castle Street 6BR/2BA by Dunedin Property Management

    Cheap, Thin and Nasty. Nice little speculators’ paradise. Were the property owners or their agent(s) on site last night to ensure their property, their tenants and the crowd were safe ??

    [click webmap to enlarge]
    DCC Webmap - 598 Castle Street, Dunedin JanFeb2013DCC Webmap – 598 Castle Street, Dunedin JanFeb2013

    DCC Rates Book - 598 Castle Street, Dunedin [ID 2108036]DCC Rates Book – 598 Castle Street, Dunedin [ID 2108036

  24. Elizabeth

    Severe repercussions ———

    ### ODT Online Sun, 6 Mar 2016
    Teen breaks back in balcony collapse
    via Herald on Sunday
    The family of a 19-year-old student who suffered spinal injuries after a balcony collapsed in Dunedin fear she may never walk again. […] When asked if [the injured woman’s grandmother] had concerns about the girl being able to walk again, the woman said: “I think the surgery went well, but the outlook’s not great. She has broken her back in three places. It’s pretty horrible. I’m sure she’ll pull through but she’s got a long road ahead.”
    Read more

  25. Hype O'Thermia

    “Safety consultant Clive Doubleday was an Occupational Health and Safety inspector for 17 years and said liability could be called into question under the Health and Safety Act. Liability could potentially be against the landlord or the tenant, but he added the latter was unlikely.” Ri-i-ight.

    Police had been trying to get people off roofs and overcrowded balconies and other unsafe perches. It must be the fault of the police too, then. Can’t attribute blame to anyone who actually by their reckless direct actions, defying commonsense and police advice, caused the balcony to fall.

    • Diane Yeldon

      Hype O’ Thermia: It hardly surprises me that a scapegoat is now being considered for the cause of these injuries. Am waiting to see whether the ODT publish the following comment:

      Attack of the balcony
      Very odd to call this accident an ‘attack’, as if the balcony was the culprit. Presumably the balcony was constructed to bear the weight of the residents of the flat and a few guests, maybe about 6 people. Not about 15. Rather than being its victims, the last ten or so people to stand and maybe jump on that balcony can be argued to be responsible for its collapse, their own injuries, the injuries of those beneath them and the damage to the landlord’s property. Nor are roofs designed for sitting or jumping on. It would be ridiculous to have to engineer the world to anticipate the reckless behaviour of crowds. Better that adult individuals learn to take responsibility for themselves, instead of assuming that if a mob acts as if something is safe, then that must be the case. I note your headline says ‘balcony collapse’, rather than ‘broken’, as if the balcony did it all by itself.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        Radio news item – “about 20 people” crowded into the balcony. And of course it wasn’t students’ fault, it was a pure accident, said students’ representative.
        Like driving on the wrong side of the road around blind corner and wiping oncoming vehicle, accident, nobody’s fault eh.

  26. russandbev

    Hype, these days there is a widespread culture of not accepting responsibility or accountability for almost anything. This culture is modeled particularly well at the DCC. If it’s alright for the goose, why not the gander? I suspect you and I were raised differently.

  27. Diane Yeldon

    Political correctness as upholding the spurious ‘right not to have your feelings hurt.’
    http://www.wakingtimes.com/2016/02/10/political-correctness-language-and-thought-control/
    Think the ‘thought control’ claim may be going a bit far. And I would not advocate for hurting people’s feelings unnecessarily. But when such politically correct ‘consideration for people’s feelings’ results in censorship and, at its worst, prohibits the truth being told, there’s a danger of losing touch with reality. I am very sorry to hear that a young woman has seriously broken her back. But now I expect there to be a media black-out on the incident, for fear of offending the injured and their friends and families. And upsetting the ones jumping on the balcony who may be feeling some twinges of guilt about injury to those under the balcony.

    A related matter is my recently observing a young person lying on their back skate-boarding down Stuart St amid weekday 8.00 am traffic (to which he would have been virtually invisible). Should he be stopped on the grounds of this being attempted suicide? Also that he may cause an accident which kills someone other than himself? Perhaps the younger generation has seen too many cartoons and Jackie Chan movies, where people can be variously beaten up, blown up and set on fire. Then merely dust themselves off and start all over again unharmed. The truth of the matter, as older people get to realise, is that you are PAPER-THIN and easily smashed. And a very painful, expensive and time-consuming process if you are lucky enough to be able to put yourself back together again.

  28. Elizabeth

    ### radionz.co.nz Sunday Updated at 3:51 pm today
    RNZ News
    Govt wants balcony collapse investigated
    The government has asked for an investigation into whether the balcony which collapsed in Dunedin on Friday, injuring 18 students, was up to building standards. […] Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith said structural building failures were rare but every incident like this needed to be thoroughly investigated. He said it was possible the balcony did meet standards but that the large number of students on it was in excess of what the Building Code required. The ministry will be working with the Dunedin City Council in its investigations and Mr Smith hopes to receive a preliminary report by the end of March.

    Council says no notice given for concert
    The Dunedin City Council (DCC) wants to know why a private concert was held without council staff, the police or Otago University being told in advance. The council said its inspectors had been to the Castle Street courtyard and the building itself was structurally sound with no maintenance issues.

    [DCC] general manager of services and development Simon Pickford said the balcony was built to hold a maximum of six or seven people.

    The venue wasn’t suitable for the 1500 people who attended and the fact it was organised in haste contributed to the accident, [Pickford] said. “This is an event that was organised at the very last-minute, that neither the council nor the police nor the university was involved. That’s something that I think did contribute to the accident. It was a concert at a venue that really wasn’t suitable.”

    Worksafe said its investigators had also examined the building and it would decide early next week whether the accident fell within its scope.
    Read more

    Related:
    Crowd packed ‘three deep’ on balcony
    Warnings before Dunedin balcony collapse

    ****

    ODT: Inquiry into safety of balcony
    … Richard McKnight, a shareholder in the company that owns the damaged flat, told the Otago Daily Times on Saturday that Ogato Investments Ltd had owned flats in Castle St since 2001.

    OGATO INVESTMENTS LIMITED (1357682)

    Directors (2)
    Colin Mark HARPER, 34 Michie Street, Dunedin 9011
    Richard Stewart MCKNIGHT, 26 Pacific Street, Roslyn, Dunedin 9010

    Shareholdings (2)
    Allocation 1:
    63 shares (50.00%) – Richard Stewart MCKNIGHT, 26 Pacific Street, Maori Hill, Dunedin 9010
    Allocation 2:
    63 shares (50.00%) – Colin Mark HARPER, 34 Michie Street, Belleknowes, Dunedin 9011

    • Elizabeth

      You have to hope that New Zealand band Six60 will be investigated: also, Young & Stupid.

      Six60 outside Castle Street flat that inspired their name Photo Instagram - Six60 (via RNZ News]Six60 outside the Castle Street flat that inspired their name.
      Photo: Instagram /Six60 (via RNZ News)

      • Hype O'Thermia

        To what extent was it a “concert” that ought to have been notified to anyone?
        The way I heard it, the group of friends making up the band flatting at 660 Castle St were asked if they’d play for friends and fans, as informal a gathering as a neighbourhood barbecue-picnic “all welcome, bring your friends too, and food to share.”
        Far more people turned up than anyone expected. The band played next door because there was more room for players and audience.
        It was in the same category as a party that through social media attracts hordes more than intended. Are people having a party now obliged to notify police, council and (if students) university authorities?

        • Elizabeth

          Are people having a party now obliged to notify police, council and (if students) university authorities?

          Answer: YES

          [as a student is reported as saying by RNZ News – Six60 can attract 3000 people to a Town hall concert so how many did anyone think would turn up to an impromptu concert outdoors (warm night) via smartphone NEWS. Given O week and Hyde St history. Huh?]

        • Hype O'Thermia

          “Are people having a party now obliged to notify police, council and (if students) university authorities?
          Answer: YES”

          When did this regulation come in? Is this a Dunedin bylaw or NZ-wide? I don’t think anyone I know is aware of this responsibility. If I ever get organised enough to invite a few people around for bevvies and edibles…….. well, at least I know what else I have to do besides removing animal hair from furniture!

        • Elizabeth

          What is a responsible host – I didn’t say it was a regulation.

          You will be aware of the way we now work with DCC, Campus Watch, Proctor, UoO, Police and other Emergency Services in order to host Events.

          Health and Safety. Crowd control.

        • Elizabeth

          TOUGH LOVE is a great learning tool.

        • Hype O'Thermia

          “You will be aware of the way we now work with DCC, Campus Watch, Proctor, UoO, Police and other Emergency Services in order to host Events.”
          Depends who is meant by “we”. And “Event”, come to that. Is a neighbourhood Christmas party an “event”? What about a neighbourhood retro picnic with thermoses and thermette and tomato sandwiches?
          But the Castle Street musicians aren’t in a Neighbourhood, they’re in a Precinct, the student precinct/ghetto, so whatever applies in Vauxhall or Concord or Opoho may not apply to them. Host responsibility in those areas include providing food as well as drink, making sure non-alcoholic drinks are available and nobody is pressured to drink alcohol, being prepared to offer beds, sofas or a place on the carpet and a cushion and blanket for anyone who isn’t OK to drive home. Host responsibility does not extend to alerting police and emergency services at the same time as invitations are issued, not in Vauxhall and Concord and Opoho.
          And yet the same thing could happen to any of us throwing a birthday party, barbecue, Irish music players & followers get-together or retro picnic “via smartphone NEWS” – we could be overrun, idiots could fulfil their purpose on this earth by behaving idiotically. So indeed it may be just as well if all social gatherings are henceforth defined as “events” and all are preceded by notifications to “DCC, Campus Watch, Proctor, UoO, Police and other Emergency Services”.
          Pre-emptive safety culture can never be too rigorous, or can it?

        • Elizabeth

          Take on board what Anonymous has said, they have the handle on it.

          I have worked as an events organiser previously.

        • Hype O'Thermia

          Elizabeth : “I have worked as an events organiser previously.”
          I don’t doubt you for a moment. However, what I would like to know is when the kind of community “being together for some social purpose” such as the examples I gave, become an Event, and when they are, well, social gatherings for entertainment. Is there a dividing line when the entertainment is provided by one sector while the others listen/watch? What about picnic or dinner – is the difference based on whether one person, couple or family provides all the food, versus pot-luck and bring your own?
          Surely there must be a way of telling what is an Event and what isn’t, since so many procedures seem to apply to Events that have not – and I think you confirmed this – become mandatory for other social-recreational gatherings.

        • Callum

          couldn’t they have it else where such as a park or sports field instead of a neighbourhood.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        “You have to hope that New Zealand band Six60 will be investigated.” I sincerely hope not. Playing music on a lovely day for the enjoyment of other students and friends shouldn’t be treated as a sin, nor as an encouragement for people to behave unwisely. The people responsible for stupid behaviour were the people who behaved stupidly. Blaming the band, the property owner, the builder who constructed the balcony, the police or anyone else is iniquitous. The practice of side-shuffling responsibility onto anyone within coo-ee does nothing except victimise the wrong people and give those who deserve blame the message that they never have to take responsibility for their own choices.
        Dolly did it, Dolly made me do it – isn’t there already too much of that attitude without another example added to the list of shame, or should I say shamelessness.

        • Elizabeth

          They did not make adequate or safe arrangements.
          I hope they’ll be held jointly liable.

      • Callum

        Well I can guarantee if they are investigated then they won’t be singing there song “Special”.

  29. Anonymous

    598 Castle St is not “next door” to 660 Castle St

  30. Anonymous

    Dealing with some issues here:

    – on the claim that “the concert was impromptu” – it was “announced” via social media on Monday and the University was aware prior (Campus Watch were detailed). Animation Research Ltd had a 360 degree motion camera rig in operation (and captured footage of the collapse). A stage was erected and sound gear installed. This is not impromptu.

    – an “impromptu” event would still need to be notified
    see here: http://www.waitakere.govt.nz/Frefor/pdf/event-safety-guidelines-osh-200104.pdf
    “Any planned activity where any structure, open
    area, roadway or other area will contain more
    people than normally found in that location at one
    time. ”

    – the venue was unsafe. Egress, crush barriers and evacuation were inadequate (a van was parked across the leg-in blocking access) as the band were performing (and ARL were working, and news media were reporting), this meets the definition of a “workplace” and both HSA and Worksafe legislation apply.

    The event organizer has strict liability here. Those suggesting that the balcony collapse was the fault of those on it and that they should take “personal responsibility” are unfortunately misguided. It is up to the event organizer and those assessing the management plan to identify and control these risks. This was clearly inadequate in this case.

    I would not want to be standing anywhere near the event organizers once the detailed investigation starts.

    • Hype O'Thermia

      You’re right, it was not impromptu, I should not have used that word. Bands generally have their own sound gear and are used to setting it up, it’s not a biggy for them, well not the musicians I’ve known.
      What was the sequence of events – “it was “announced” via social media on Monday” – to whom, i.e. was it directed to the world at large or was it phrased as something for the local fans/friends “and the University was aware prior (Campus Watch were detailed)” – in response to direct communication from the band or because they became aware that news was spreading on social media? When did ARL become involved, were they approached to take part in it or did they see an opportunity when word reached them that this was happening in a day or two? Were news media invited to cover the performance, or was their presence a response to hearing that something was going on in Castle Street?
      The situation described moments before the balcony fell appears to be what was virtually intended all except the balcony giving way.
      Whether this is so depends, does it not, on how it developed, from inception to catastrophe.

  31. Hype O'Thermia

    “Any planned activity where any structure, open
    area, roadway or other area will contain more
    people than normally found in that location at one
    time. ”
    Ah, the old-fashioned sales, before the almost constant “sales” of the present day! People queued right down the block before opening time, elbows sharpened for greatest advantage. Sale price goods were the real deal, weren’t stock bought in specially to fill the tables, SALE PRICE stickered.

  32. photonz

    Looking at the size of the balcony, it should be expected to take half a dozen people safely. With a safety factor built in, you could probably crowd 20 people on, and expect it not to collapse.

    But if those people started jumping, they can exert 6 times the force as if they were just standing.

    And if all 20 people jumped at once (in time to the music) it could be as if the balcony was carrying the weight of 120 people.

    So what’s the solution? Perhaps give students lessons in basic physics.

    Or maybe just in common sense (after the collapse, they continued to dance on the other crowded balconies, and others continued to stand underneath).

    • Hype O'Thermia

      “And if all 20 people jumped at once (in time to the music) it could be as if the balcony was carrying the weight of 120 people.”
      Yet apparently the band who were presenting this concert, were supposed to intuit this possibility and prevent its occurrence. Short of holding the concert in a large flat paddock on a plain devoid of anything more than 20cm off the ground, there does not appear to be any way of communicating to teens and twenties the concept of danger and the advisability of self-preservation, when “after the collapse, they continued to dance on the other crowded balconies…”.

    • Diane Yeldon

      Armies are supposed to break step when they march across bridges for this very reason.
      Interesting that this morning’s radio news says that a top quality video of the incident shows that the people on the balcony were NOT jumping. Yet, in today’s ODT, eye-witness accounts say people were jumping. Maybe they were ‘moving rhythmically’. I find it hard to believe that the people on the balcony were stationary while music was being played.
      Whether events should be properly and safely organized and whether people should take personal responsibility for their own safety is not an ‘either/or’. It is a ‘both’.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        It is impossible to safely organise people who take risks – not only the balcony crowders and jumpers/non-jumpers – but also those who climbed onto roofs and defy instructions from police. You can organise till you’re blue in the face but when people decide to do stupid dangerous things what do you do? Never do anything that could conceivably induce foolish people to come to a place that is not devoid of anything whatsoever that could be mis-used? Tool up with lasers and cattle prods and lassoos to stop them at their first step towards dangerous place that you as a sentient being expected even teenagers to have the sense to avoid?

  33. Simon

    I see Cull is trying to close the stable door after the horse has bolted.

    {Link: ODT: Balcony collapse: This ‘cannot happen again’ -Eds}

  34. Diane Yeldon

    Dunedin Mayor, Dave Cull interviewed on Morning Report this morning:
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player/201792106
    Not quick at thinking on his feet.

  35. E. Palmer

    So when exactly does a block of student flats suddenly become a concert venue??? It’s not like we haven’t had this happening for years and the Council is only hearing about it for the first time!

    Surely a temporary change of use permit should have been applied for? There’s your answer Mr Cull – It IS within the Council’s means to shut down any event held on private property that hasn’t catered to the safety of its guests, i.e. structural and electrical WOF, fire alarms and exits, crowd control, adequate toilet facilities, noise control, rubbish disposal and emergency procedures, amongst the many that were clearly non-existent at this Castle Street event. Short of calling in the Army, Dunedin is just not equipped for that, so mob mentality will continue to rule here.

    It’s not rocket science to see all those balconies were overloaded and dangerous. So what is this Government thinking to be calling an inquiry looking into their safety, when a far more telling one would be to investigate how many of those injured had their judgment impaired by alcohol? Time to raise the drinking age back to 20 I say. This town is dying proof that teenagers simply cannot handle it and we have years of proof to substantiate that!

    • Hype O'Thermia

      Wasn’t it an outdoor concert in the yard of one of the flats? It was personal decisions by individuals to go into flats – presumably with explicit or implicit permission of the tenants – and crowd onto the balconies.
      How about leaving the rules alone and reinstating personal accountability? How about landlords including in the lease “tenants are not permitted to go onto the roof” and stating the penalty, and that police, fire and emergency services and university authorities are encouraged to remove offenders.

      Going on trying to prevent stupid actions resulting in harm is a waste of time. If Cull had said that instead of burbling about something unspecified that he hadn’t a clue about, that would Have To Be Done, he wouldn’t have sounded like such a plonker in the radio interview.

      Building regs can be made ludicrously over the top, penalising ordinary people with above-cabbage brainpower, but what about roofs? Safety nets compulsory around the base of all roofs? Not that this helps the landlord who has to fix the broken tiles and bent corrugated iron from solid young intelligent people who don’t even know enough to walk along the line of roofing nails.

      • Diane Yeldon

        Very sensible, Hype O’Thermia: The landlords could include in their leases an agreement for tenants not to go on the roof, not to allow visitors to the flat to go on the roof, not to hold parties in the flat or grounds with over about twenty people and not to allow visitors on any balconies. And that they risk eviction if there are reasonable grounds for DCC Noise Control to have to attend the property more than three times in three months. It’s a free world and if the tenants don’t like what’s on offer, they will just have to find an alternative lease. The few Dunedin landlords who don’t at first include these provisions in their lease agreements soon will because they will be the only ones to get their property trashed. That leaves only the resident private property owners for the DCC to sort out. And it’s reasonable to assume that property owners are a good deal more careful about who they let in as guests than tenants, as they have more to lose.

  36. Elizabeth

    ### dunedintv.co.nz Wed, 9 Mar 2016
    Disorder increasing at Dunedin Botanic Garden
    Police are concerned about increasing disorder in and around the Dunedin Botanic Garden. An administration building window was smashed on Monday night, although nothing inside was reported stolen. It follows reports of people drinking and causing disturbances in the public space recently. Police are worried there could be a resurgence of student drinking games being played in the reserve. That was a problem several years ago, when intoxicated people were falling out of trees. The facility’s also been targeted by thieves previously, who’ve broken into the hot house to take cacti. It’s legal to drink alcohol in the garden.
    Ch39 Video

  37. Elizabeth

    HYDE ST PARTY clashes with one of the city’s highlights of the year, the iD Dunedin Fashion Week catwalk show at the Dunedin Railway Station.

    ### ODT Online Mon, 14 Mar 2016
    Keg party going ahead this weekend
    By Rhys Chamberlain
    Dunedin’s infamous student party in Hyde St will go ahead this weekend despite several high-profile incidents involving students during the past month. The Dunedin City Council advertised “temporary road closures” in Saturday’s ODT for the “OUSA Hyde St Keg Party”, advising streets to be closed from 6am to midnight on March 19. […] Asked for his views on the party, Mr Cull said: “What I think should happen is that everyone should be drinking less.”
    Read more

  38. Elizabeth

    Hyde St Party is unlikely to get ‘better’ while the authorities allow it to continue.

    ### ODT Online Wed, 16 Mar 2016
    Outrage at Hyde St Party ticket sellout
    By Rhys Chamberlain
    The Otago University Students’ Association has come under fire from students irate at its Hyde St Party ticketing system after many missed out. One thousand tickets sold out in less than 45 seconds yesterday for Saturday’s event. A second allocation of 700 at 6pm was gone in 30 seconds.
    Read more

  39. Elizabeth

    Mon, 28 Mar 2016

    ODT: Warning for student after Facebook post
    A student who posted on Facebook asking if anyone could do their assignment was among those disciplined for dishonest practices by the University of Otago last year. Academic disciplinary reports released to the Otago Daily Times showed 35 students were dealt with for misconduct or cheating last year, down from 42 in 2014 and 72 in 2013.

    ODT: Proctor sees more students
    More misbehaving students found themselves in hot water with the University of Otago proctor last year than any other year since the code of conduct came into force in 2007. The university’s annual disciplinary reports showed the proctor dealt with 576 offenders last year, up from 482 the previous year.

  40. Elizabeth

    Council policy change last year, fines rose to $285 from $84, affects increase in compliance of excessive noise directions.

    Mon, 18 Apr 2016
    ODT: Noise complaints rise; DCC concerned
    Noise complaints in the student quarter continue to rise and present a concern for the Dunedin City Council, environmental health manager Ros MacGill said. Noise complaints in North Dunedin made up almost half of all complaints in the city during February and March, statistics released by the council show. In the student quarter, 475 noise complaints were made during the two months – up on 434 during the same time last year and almost double the 253 made in 2012.

    ****

    SANITATION AND PURIFICATION ALERT

    The city is fortunate to have University of Otago students as part of the community, vice-chancellor Harlene Hayne writes.

    Fri, 15 Apr 2016
    ODT: Uni’s most accomplished intake
    OPINION It is easy to think of students as a monolithic group, and to draw generalisations about the student community. Recently, national media commentators have taken pot-shots from afar, with one describing our student population as arrogant rich kids having fun. I find it impossible to reconcile sweeping comments like this with what I have come to know of our students.

    I guess if you earn more than John Key PM (thanks NZ taxpayers!) and live in a grand university lodge, distantly at St Leonards, you too would have weak thoughts filled with love, mama-goosefat and fairy dust.

  41. Elizabeth

    This thread began with a music video by Lada Gaga about College rape —Til It Happens To You. A portion of proceeds from sale of the song is being donated to organisations helping survivors of sexual assault. Til It Happens To You was written by Diane Warren and Lady Gaga; performed by Lady Gaga, from the film The Hunting Ground.

    The US video states:
    One in five college women will be sexually assaulted this year unless something changes.

    ****

    █ Nearly 1 million sign petition to remove judge. 

    ### CNN Updated 2100 GMT (0500 HKT) June 11, 2016
    Stanford rape case: Inside the court documents
    By Ray Sanchez, CNN
    A California judge’s decision to give former Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner a six-month jail sentence for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman has caused a national uproar. Now, court documents obtained by CNN shed new light on the disturbing assault and Turner’s apparent history of alcohol abuse and sexually aggressive behaviour.
    Key points from presentencing documents that give insight into a case that grabbed national attention + Videos at http://edition.cnn.com/2016/06/10/us/stanford-rape-case-court-documents/

    ****

    O U T • I N • T H R E E • M O N T H S • A T • C A L I F OR N I A

    ### BuzzFeed News Jun 4, 2016 at 8:17 a.m.
    Here Is The Powerful Letter The Stanford Victim Read Aloud To Her Attacker [trending 16,741,751 views]
    By Katie J.M. Baker, Reporter
    A former Stanford swimmer who sexually assaulted an unconscious woman was sentenced to six months in jail because a longer sentence would have “a severe impact on him,” according to a judge. At his sentencing Thursday, his victim read him a letter describing the “severe impact” the assault had on her.

    One night in January 2015, two Stanford University graduate students biking across campus spotted a freshman thrusting his body on top of an unconscious, half-naked woman behind a dumpster. This March, a California jury found the former student, 20-year-old Brock Allen Turner, guilty of three counts of sexual assault. Turner faced a maximum of 14 years in state prison. On Thursday, he was sentenced to six months in county jail and probation. The judge said he feared a longer sentence would have a “severe impact” on Turner, a champion swimmer who once aspired to compete in the Olympics — a point repeatedly brought up during the trial.
    On Thursday, Turner’s victim addressed him directly, detailing the severe impact his actions had on her — from the night she learned she had been assaulted by a stranger while unconscious, to the grueling trial during which Turner’s attorneys argued that she had eagerly consented.
    The woman, now 23, told BuzzFeed News she was disappointed with the “gentle” sentence and angry that Turner still denied sexually assaulting her.
    “Even if the sentence is light, hopefully this will wake people up,” she said. “I want the judge to know that he ignited a tiny fire. If anything, this is a reason for all of us to speak even louder.”

    She provided her statement to BuzzFeed News:
    Go to https://www.buzzfeed.com/katiejmbaker/heres-the-powerful-letter-the-stanford-victim-read-to-her-ra?utm_term=.aiZ9yG6y2#.armPL8mLK

  42. Elizabeth

    RachelPlattenVEVO Published on May 19, 2015
    Rachel Platten – Fight Song (Official Video)
    Music Video by Rachel Platten performing “Fight Song.” (C) 2015 Columbia Records, A Division of Sony

    And all those things I didn’t say
    Wrecking balls inside my brain
    I will scream them loud tonight
    Can you hear my voice this time?

    This is my fight song
    Take back my life song
    Prove I’m alright song
    My power’s turned on
    Starting right now I’ll be strong
    I’ll play my fight song
    And I don’t really care if nobody else believes
    ‘Cause I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me

  43. Hype O'Thermia

    ” a champion swimmer who once aspired to compete in the Olympics — a point repeatedly brought up during the trial”
    Why is sporting talent – or career, future travel for education and career advancement – even a thing? Why is a kid raised in a garage, missing school and unable to afford sports gear, “deserving of the punishment for the crime” with no judicial qualms about his chance to get a job (not easy with a conviction) and prove himself competent, perhaps talented? Why are his future opportunities to travel unimportant – OR – why are other more fortunate people’s opportunities important? Is offending by an “underclass” person more hurtful to the people they harm than if it were done by someone from a privileged background?

    So what’s it about? Is it that judges see the nice young chap who’s made a mistake as “one of us” and the underclass one as typical young offender? Note, mistake v offence. He’s so unlike the people “we” were at that age, no sense of identifying with him – not that the US and NZ have a class system like the British. Crikey, no.

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