Complainant Jane Schaverien holds a copy of a 2009 report of the ombudsman into two government-run aerial spraying programmes. The report criticised the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and the Ministry of Health for their handling of spray programmes to eradicate the painted apple moth in West Auckland and the Asian gypsy moth in Hamilton between 1999 and 2004. Many residents developed health problems. The ombudsman found that the ministries had not paid sufficient attention to the impact of the programmes and had not provided information about the ingredients of the sprays, and recommended guidelines for future operations. Making complaints to the Office of the Ombudsman is a way for citizens to question the actions of government bodies and have them independently investigated.
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Photograph by Kent Blechnyden
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