With a background in firefighting, and over decades experience of leadership in the community sector, Peter Humphreys has a unique blend of operational efficiency, strategic planning and strong commitment to improving people's lives.
Peter is a national advisor on homelessness strategies, and has twice been awarded for his services to social justice. But it is his hands-on social work experience to which Peter attributes his pragmatic and empathetic approach to getting to the root of social issues.
In his management capacity with the Hamilton Christian Night Shelter, Peter has refined his leadership style to incorporate a strong commitment to efficiency, collaboration, capacity building and community engagement. His previous leadership experience with NZ Fire Service helped Peter develop an adaptable skill set and an action - orientated work ethic.
Peter believes that the same long term planning that cities apply to their infrastructure ought to be applied to improving Hamilton's social issues.
My vision for Hamilton is that it is a city where public spaces are well designed and maintained, where walking, cycling or public transport is the best choice for most trips. I would envision that Hamilton would be a forward-thinking city with regards to infrastructure development within the limitations of available budgets. This Hamilton would have a range of lifestyle choices and living environments and better-quality urban design. Most importantly I would envision Hamilton to be a city where housing is plentiful and more affordable.
Hamilton’s population is increasing by over 40 people per week which is about a bus load of new people weekly so we need to be looking at future city infrastructure requirements and accommodating future residential growth. This will mean building vertically in the business districts and infilling with apartments. This will make the city more efficient to run. We also need to accommodate other crucial land uses such as business and industry. So, the reality is that we are going to have to talk to our neighbours, the surrounding territorial authorities, about expanding beyond our current boundaries.
I would make sure that everyone living in Hamilton has a warm safe home but I know the reality of that happening is still currently slim so I will say put an emphasis on having a more vibrant inner city that is pedestrian safe and appealing to visit and spend time in.
There is a system called Surtrac: This is a real-time adaptive signal control system that will monitor traffic and control lights on the streets around Hamilton. As part of the system, traffic lights would use sensors to identify transit and freight vehicles and allow them to move through the signals quicker, thereby reducing pollution that would occur while the vehicles are idling at a stop light. This could also be used for a fleet of diesel buses so they are expedited through the traffic. This could be introduced when the traffic lights are upgraded.
Those elected need to engage and consult with the voters and continue to engage with people once voted into office. There is a culture of expecting that councillors will provide the answers once voted into office. Then, when that doesn’t happen, the voters become disillusioned – hence the lack of engagement. Having a more people friendly communication and submission system that allows residents to communicate their needs and wishes for the direction of the city to council would go part way in solving the lack of interest in council business.