Weather Watch - Heavy rain
Metservice has issued a heavy rain watch for Waikato and Waitomo. The watch is valid from 5am to 10pm Saturday (20 April). More info here

Media Release 13 April 2020 - Report breaches and scams to Police, not Council

13 Apr 2020, 1:05 PM

Diligent citizens are alerting local Council’s in droves for suspected COVID-19 breaches.

New Zealanders wishing to report COVID-19 breaches are required to fill in the online form at, yet councils are receiving an increasing number of reports from local residents.

Western Waikato Emergency Operating Centre local controller, David Simes, said people need to use the proper channels for reporting breaches so councils can continue essential work.

“We’ve had increasing numbers of people reporting people gathering in public areas or schools and these need to be provided to Police so they can be prioritised and actioned.”

“By all means, tell your local council about noise complaints, animal control issues, water supply issues or rubbish in public areas, but breaches require a police response so need to be reported using the online form.”

All breaches should be reported using the police online form, not the dedicated 105 or 111 phone numbers.

Essential services for councils include water treatment and supply, animal control, waste collection, road maintenance, and civil defence emergency management during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Along with reporting COVID-19 breaches to police, people should also be mindful of suspected scammers.

Official agencies working on the COVID-19 response will not ask for bank account details for donations or financial assistance.

“If you’re unsure if an email, text or any other communication is genuine, don’t click on the link or open the attachment. Contact the organisation via their official contact channels and ask.”

People requiring assistance are reminded to use the official channels to ask for help.

  • Waikato Welfare Call Centre 0800 800 405 for assistance with food and medication, groceries, or medical appointments.
  • Work and Income 0800 559 009 for financial assistance.

Calls into the Waikato Welfare Call Centre are needs assessed and distributed to the local welfare teams to connect with authorised volunteer buddies.

The WWEOC volunteer buddies available to assist residents have been provided with clear identification which they are required to wear at all times while undertaking volunteer activities.

Simes advised anyone who has concerns about whether a volunteer is legitimate should ask for proof of authorisation or email [email protected].

Stay kind, be considerate

Media contact:
Public Information Manager - Western Waikato Emergency Operating Centre
027 382 3218 | [email protected]