09:05 Small business revenue down 22% last month

Fresh data on the impact of Covid on small businesses finds a bounce-back in May but times are still very tough. The cloud-based accounting software platform Xero has today released its Small Business Insights for May, based on anonymised and aggregated customer data. It finds small business revenue growth was down 22 per cent last month, but this was a significant improvement on April, revenue growth was down 41 per cent. The data shows small businesses are having to wait longer to get invoices paid,  and paints a picture of the industries hardest hit by the pandemic and its aftermath. Lynn speaks with Xero New Zealand Managing Director, Craig Hudson.

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Photo: Xero

09:15 Tough times in small town Northland

Two small business owners in the Northland township of Maungaturoto who have survived the Covid cashflow crunch tell Lynn about how tough it has been. Josie Benetto has had Sitting Duck Takeaway for seven years, and Pat Massey has owned the Maungaturoto Butchery for six years.

Maungaturoto businesses

Maungaturoto businesses Photo: Glenda Wakeham

09:25 Government outlines $3b infrastructure spend-up

Crane construction generic

Photo: Unsplash / Bence Bella Schottner

The government has outlined details of $3 billion dollars worth of spending on infrastructure projects around the country as part of its shovel ready Covid recovery programme, and just how much each region will get. Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones have just announced the spending, which they say will create more than 20,000 jobs and unlock more than $5 billion of projects up and down New Zealand. It includes about $210 million for climate resilience and flood protection, $155 million for transformative energy projects, about $180 million for large-scale construction projects and $50 million for enhanced regional digital connectivity. RNZ political reporter Yvette McCullough has more details.

09:25 Programme removing violent men from the home proves successful

A family violence programme that removes men from the home, rather than their victims, has been shown to reduce offending by nearly 60 per cent over five years. Researchers at Massey University have conducted several studies into the success of Gandhi Nivas, which runs three homes in Auckland offering emergency housing and counselling to men who are subject to Police Safety Order or involved in police matters relating to family harm. The most recent study looked at five years' of data from the Otahuhu home, and found 57.5 per cent of previous offenders didn't reoffend after engaging with the Gandhi Nivas service. Joining Lynn to talk about Gandhi Nivas and the research into it is Dr David Codyre, Professor Mandy Morgan of Massey University and Inspector David Glossop.

Happy family standing in the park at the sunset time.  Concept of friendly family.

Photo: 123RF

09:45 Victoria lockdown, and more spies please!

Australia correspondent Chris Niesche joins Lynn to talk about Victoria's lockdown that will take effect later tonight, and the inquiry into the state's management of hotel quarantine after a number of Covid cases were linked to control breaches. Australia is looking to recruit 500 new cyber spies in the wake of allegations of espionage activity and a breakdown in relations with Beijing. And Qantas boss Alan Joyce defends his remarks urging the government not to bail out Virgin Australia.

A long queue of cars wait at a drive-through COVID-19 testing site located in a shopping centre carpark in Melbourne.

Photo: AFP

10:05 Asbestos poisoning: The Air That We Breathe - Kara Douglas

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Photo: Kara Douglas

Wellington-based author Kara Douglas tells Lynn Freeman about her personal link to what has been dubbed one of Australia's worst industrial disasters.  Her novel The Air That We Breathe tells the story of Italian migrants Abele and Maria Moretti who relocate to the Western Australian mining town of Wittenoom in the 1960s, ostensibly for a better life. They're promised a house and financial security, working in an asbestos mine.  But tragedy takes over when, despite health warnings to management, the mine continues to operate and the toxic effects of asbestos take hold.  In fact,more than an estimated two thousand people have died as a result of being environmentally or occupationally exposed to asbestos fibres at Wittenoom, described as the most contaminated site in the Southern Hemisphere, and which has been struck off the map of Western Australia.

10:35 Book review - Wife After Wife by Olivia Hayfield

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Photo: Hachette

Carole Beu of the Women's Bookshop reviews Wife After Wife by Olivia Hayfield, published by Hachette. Great fun, based on the 6 wives of Henry VIII.

10:45 The Reading

The Writer's Festival, part 3. Written by Stephanie Johnson, read by Judith Gibson.

11:05 Music with Kirsten Johnstone

Kirsten joins Lynn to share a song by Sault, Wildfires and look at Phoebe Bridger's album Punisher.

11:20 Frogs leaping onto the page

Lynn Freeman speaks with Kelly Body, who has recreated the now extinct Aurora and Waitomo frogs to raise awareness of the threats to our remaining four ancient frog species: the Archey's, Hochstetters, Maud Island and Hamilton frogs. They are joined by Forest and Bird's central North Island regional manager, ecologist, and frog lover Dr Rebecca Stirnemann.  Kelly's frog prints are available to buy.

11:45 Undersea eruptions in the labs, and when is a smell not a smell?

Science correspondent Siouxsie Wiles joins Lynn to look at how researchers have built a lab-based system to mimic deep-sea volcanic eruptions and compared their findings with data from the eruption of Havre Volcano in the Kermadecs. She'll also look at how, for the first time, researchers have created an electrical signature that's perceived as an odour in the brain's smell-processing centre - even though it doesn't exist. And narwhals are elusive - but now we know how they sound.

Associate Professor Dr Siouxsie Wiles is the head of Bioluminescent Superbugs Lab at the University of Auckland.

The Le Havre submarine volcano.

The Le Havre submarine volcano. Photo: NIWA




Music played in this show

Artist: Yazmin Lacey  
Song: Morning Matters
Time: 11.42