Don't judge a book by its cover - Auckland library solves mystery of disappearing books

Auckland's Central City Library has solved the mystery of books vanishing off shelves, and then discovered wedged in peculiar places around the building.

For months, books were vanishing off shelves, and then found in peculiar places around the building. Source: 1 NEWS

It turns out the city's homeless were stashing their favourites because they can't borrow them without a home address.

"A lot of our street community were wanting to put them underneath the couches or under book shelves and kind of hiding them in places," librarian Sean Taylor said.

"Anywhere they thought was theirs and they can keep it there.

"And for a librarian it's really weird, we're like 'oh what's this book doing here?' and we've put it back."

But when the staff discovered the homeless were responsible, they came up with a solution and informed their rough sleeping patrons.

"We actually have this service where you can hold it on the shelf, and you can come back in the morning and get stuck back in," Taylor said.

With Auckland's central library a refuge for the city's homeless during the day, dozens will routinely come in to escape the cold and get lost in a book.

But without a proper address they can't become a library member.

"They're really well read. We've got a guy who I've had a discussion about the meaning of words and the reference section and it's the kind of intellectual conversation you'd expect from an academic," Taylor said.

The message? Don't judge a book by its cover.



Migrants' stories of abuse working in Queenstown 'tarnishing' top tourist town's reputation

Migrants' stories of being allegedly racially abused, mistreated and threatened on the job in Queenstown are tarnishing the tourist town's reputation, according to an employment relations consultant who helps many of these workers.

Seven Sharp reported a large migrant workforce helps keep the jewel in New Zealand's tourism crown running, but for some their migrant status is being taken advantage of, which often goes unreported.

Migrant worker "James" began a manual labour job in Queenstown in March but shortly after, he wanted to walk.

He said he was racially abused by workmates and had told his management this was happening.

James also said he received little training and was told to drive a truck that was carrying a load well beyond its capacity.

We've got a strong migrant population and that population doesn't know their rights - Employment advocate David Buckingham

He said when he told his boss he wouldn't drive it, "he's like 'yeah you better drive otherwise you'll get fired and kicked out of this country".

Employment advocate David Buckingham says it's not acceptable when migrant workers in Queenstown "are being treated less than New Zealanders".

"The rules are the same no matter what part of the country you're in. The difference here is we've got a strong migrant population and that population doesn't know their rights," he said.

"I think there is a knowledge that migrants won't take a personal grievance the same that you or I would in the same circumstances. They feel that they are on the back foot already. They know that something's not right, but the question is what's the consequence?

"I have cases where people have been threatened to do unsafe work."

The Ministry of business, Innovation and Employment says labour exploitation practices are not welcome in New Zealand, and are unacceptable.

Anyone who is being forced to work for less than the minimum wage or excessive hours should contact either Immigration New Zealand, the Labour Inspectorate or Crimestoppers. 

Migrant workers have the same employment rights as all other workers in New Zealand, and reporting these practices will not affect their visa status.

James, meanwhile, will need to find another job to stay but says he won't tolerate more abuse.

When the dream turns into a nightmare - migrant workers say they are being taken advantage of in Queenstown Seven Sharp lifts the lid on what migrant workers are calling exploitation. Source: Seven Sharp

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Video: Four people killed in 'absolute tragedy' on road north of Taupo

Four people have been killed after a head-on crash involving two vehicles on State Highway 1 north of Taupo this afternoon.

The crash on SH1 has left four dead and eight people injured, including a baby. Source: 1 NEWS

The crash occurred at the intersection of SH1 and Tutukau Rd, Oruanui, about 20km from Taupo, around 3.30pm today.

Police have confirmed that four people have been killed and eight injured after two people movers collided.

Of the eight that are injured, two are in a critical condition and the others are in a serious condition or have moderate injuries. 

Senior Sergeant Nicky Cooney updates on the crash at the intersection of SH1 and Tutukau Rd, Oruanui. Source: 1 NEWS

A ten-month old baby has been airlifted to Waikato Hospital, 1 NEWS was told. Other patients include a man and woman both in their 40s, and a 17-year-old female.

Police are asking motorists to use either SH5 or SH30 to avoid the scene of the crash at SH1 and Tutukau Road, north of Taupo, or use the diversions suggested in this map. Source: Supplied

Both lanes of the SH1 were blocked, with motorists being advised to avoid the area if possible.

Motorists were asked to use either SH5 or SH30 to avoid the scene.

The diversion for south to north is at Tirohanga Road and SH1. The diversion for north to south is at Oruanui Road and SH1.

Senior Sergeant Nicky Cooney told 1 NEWS near the scene that the deaths were an "absolute tragedy".

She said it was "very early" in the police investigation and she would not be drawn on a cause at the moment.

"It is school holiday period, we can always expect more traffic on our highways," she said.

"This is a timely reminder to drive to the conditions, weather does play a factor in our ability to stop, reduce your speed and take regular breaks."

No details were available about the nationalities of the victims. Suitcases were seen in one car, while a pushchair was seen placed by the side of the road.

The Hamilton-based Waikato Westpac Rescue Helicopter, the Tauranga-based Trustpower TECT Rescue Helicopter, the Rotorua-based BayTrust Rescue Helicopter and the Taupo-based Greenlea Rescue Helicopter were all dispatched to the scene.

The deaths bring the number of people killed on New Zealand roads since Friday to 14. The number of deaths for the year is 297.