web analytics
The Standard

Can iwi stop asset sales?

Written By: - Date published: 1:12 pm, July 9th, 2012 - 38 comments
Categories: Maori Issues, privatisation, treaty settlements - Tags:

Iwi want the Nats’ asset sales put on hold until their claims to water have been settled. Key says that people can own water rights but not water. Iwi say water is a taonga, ownership of which is guaranteed under the Treaty and hasn’t been extinguished by subsequent law. Seems to me that Key thinks iwi are just another class of person. He doesn’t understand, or chooses not to understand, that iwi were sovereign groups which retain any rights that they didn’t expressly give up when they entered into the Treaty partnership.

See, under English law, people can’t own water, or indeed land. You own only rights – for example, if you own a property what you actually own is a set of rights over the land. Underneath that sits the Crown’s radical title. The Crown owns the land -the ‘radical’ in the term radical title meaning ‘root or source’. That’s basically it’s sovereignty over the land, the power to define the rights you and others have to use the land – you have no property rights but those allowed to you by the Crown as holder of radical title.

That’s where Key is starting from: the Crown’s in charge and it never said anyone has ownership rights to the water, so iwi don’t.

What Key is ignoring is that iwi had their own rules regarding rights and ownership of water before the Crown showed up and the doctrine of aboriginal title, as well as the words of the Treaty, mean that those pre-existing rules were not wiped away by the Treaty.

If you want to try to express the iwi relationship with water in terms that are compatible with English law, you could say they were sovereigns with radical title to the water, which hasn’t been subsequently extinguished by treaty, by law made by the Government empowered by the Treaty, or by abandonment.

Of course, someone will have explained that to Key. But someone else will have been in his other ear pointing out that picking a fight with Maori over the Treaty could be a good way to win some votes back and wedge the opponents of asset sales. Guess who he listened to.

38 comments on “Can iwi stop asset sales?”

  1. Plan B 1

    It may be that Key is going for a divide and conquor approach. To take something off all of us he.
    1. offers it implicity cheap to some of us
    2. Divide maori – deal with specific tribes
    3. Divide maori and non maori

    In the end he will win because of these divisions.
    If we stuck to the line that the hydro dams belong to everyone it would be better.

    Dealing with tribes individually always seemed to be part of the colonial playbook- divide and conquor- pay off elites etc.

    They like things that are not democratic and work with entities that deny our democracy.

    • Thisblogrocks 1.1

      The Claim was submitted by the New Zealand Maori Council a pan-tribal council, however specific redress as per each Iwi will be a feature of redress but only if the NZMC are successful in their claim, keeping in mind the NZMC has not lost a case against the Crown yet.

      The divide and conquer tactic is still a concern, i.e. “Hydro dams belong to everyone” Maori are not claiming they own the hyrdo dams which do already belong to everyone in NZ but not for long as it seems that argument failed as soon as the Mixed Ownership Model became an Act.

      Now Maori are asking the Crown to prove ownership of the water that drives the dams bringing to light Maori Treaty and indigenous rights that could serve to halt or even stop the sale of these assets.

      Maori traditionally never claim ownership over land, water or anything short of the kakahu on their backs, I see this a a purely legal challenge to govt actions that will negatively effect NZers for generations to come.

      All the best.

      • mike e 1.1.1

        They may not have claimed these Ideas of Anglo saxon ownership but the Crown gave them these rights and European took full advantage.
        Now Maori are sticking up for their rights.
        Racial envy is creeping in.

        • Populuxe1 1.1.1.1

          Technically those “rights” only exist courtesy of recognition by Western legal and cultural institutions, and it would only be “envy” if you clung to some weird romantic notion about tribalism having any merits over liberal social democracy.

          • mike e 1.1.1.1.1

            Tory economic tribalism you are referring to obviously. sneaking in the little racist comment.

            • Populuxe1 1.1.1.1.1.1

              You read racism into it presumably because you’re an enemy of human rights and social equality.

          • McFlock 1.1.1.1.2

            Um – surely if the “rights” exist only because of western niceness, then they still exist?
                     
            I mean, people can debate whether traditional Maori attitudes to (or lack of) concepts such as ownership are consistent with court challenges or are practical in an industrialised environment with massive externalities, but the fact is that Maori have a decent claim to ownership of the water – enough to demonstrate once again that the nats really haven’t thought this through.

  2. Awesome eddie I think you are on the money with this post.

    • Bored 2.1

      Could not agree more, Eddie is on the ball. Lets hope the iwi are not buggered over by the Maori Party’s need for the baubles of office.

  3. ad 3

    I thought the Treaty of Waitangi commission recommendations were not binding upon the Crown?

    • toad 3.1

      They are not, as far as historical grievances are concerned. But this is arguably the creation of a new grievance by the abrogation of what is an existing property right.

      And while the Waitangi Tribunal cannot itself injunct the Government in respect of that, the High Court can.

      • Gosman 3.1.1

        How is this a new grieveance when there has already been a privatisation involving water rights and energy companies in the recent past? Do the Maori people/organisations involved in this not remember Contact energy?

    • bad12 3.2

      Yeah you are right of course, the Waitangi Tribunal cannot force upon the Crown any view that it comes to after the hearing of evidence,

      However,

      After a strong recommendation from the Waitangi Tribunal that sides with the applicants, in the present case, the New Zealand Maori Council, those applicants can approach the High Court seeking relief from the Government action/inaction at the heart of the Waitangi Tribunal application,

      Should the High Court at such a point allow an injunction at that point staying the Government’s hand in asset sales there would then have to be a substantive hearing as to ‘ownership’,

      Ask a knowledgeable Maori, and most have this knowledge, for a brief precis of Whakapapa, what you will get is a recitation of Maunga, Moana,and, Awa along with Hapu and Iwi,

      These recitations simply state this is my Mountain, this is my Lake or Sea, this is my River, and these are my Family and Tribe(s),

      Such correct recitation is the force of Maori ‘ownership’ just as in Pakeha society ‘ownership’ is denoted by the correct piece of paper being able to be produced,

      Such ‘Maori Law’ isn’t the result of yesterdays ruminations, such has been the norm of Maori society since befor colonization…

      • mickysavage 3.2.1

        The real problem for the Government is the decision in Paki v Attorney General which was released by the Supreme Court a couple of weeks ago.  This decision could be Ngati Apa like in terms of effect and redneck response.

        The Court held that local iwi MAY have a claim against the Crown as trustee for non navigable rivers in the country because the indigenous title to these rivers has not been extinguished.  They are taonga, preserved by the Treaty of Waitangi.

        This is a real headache for the Government and if I was a private investor thinking about Mighty River Power I would say there is a fairly significant amount of risk.

        The Waitangi Tribunal does not have jurisdiction if this argument flies.  THe Crown has an obligation as trustee to return these parts of the rivers to the beneficiaries, local iwi. 

  4. gobsmacked 4

    I can see Pita Sharples 2012 on the forecourt of Parliament, addressing the hikoi led by Pita Sharples 2004 …

    Pita 04: “It’s our foreshore – er, river! Thief! Traitor! Sell-out!”

    Pita 12: “You don’t understand … we got this deal, and it’s good for Maori, it involves a nice car and everything …”

  5. Tiger Mountain 5

    “iwi” can quite likely help stop asset sales, in certain forums, but the best result will be to unite with pākehā that oppose asset sales in a combined campaign that does not allow ShonKey to play divide and rule.

  6. bomber 6

    I think this can unite Maori Nationalism with Economic Nationalism

    If you are a Pakeha who hates asset sales, you should rally around the Treaty – http://tumeke.blogspot.co.nz/2012/07/if-you-are-pakeha-who-hates-asset-sales.html

    • Populuxe1 6.1

      Small problem with that. Economic Nationalism based in the principles of socialism grants equal social ownership of the means of production, resources and cooperative management of the economy. This is not compatible with Maori Nationalism which seeks specific authority over resources based on aristocratic hierarchy and accident of birth. It amazes me that so few people seem to see the contradiction.

      • RedLogix 6.1.1

        That’s true, but still does not take away from the fact that Maori still have communal institutions that are capable of representing community interests.

        Now you and I may not like the way they are run, but that’s a separate issue to the fact that they are still very potent insitutions. In a way you and I are not as isolated ‘consumer units’.

        • Populuxe1 6.1.1.1

          I have a great deal of difficulty in seeing corporate Iwi as anything better than any other self-interested and rapacious corporate entity with little interest in the desires and needs of Maoridom as a whole, or human beings in general. In most cases the “communal institutions” have very little connection with the corporate hierarchy. The slave ships fiasco pretty much underlined it for me.

          • RedLogix 6.1.1.1.1

            I’m not arguing with you point here. There is lots that can be said along those lines.

            Yet there is another side to iwi that has fiercely held onto it’s cultural and communal roots. I’ve seen it up close and personal many times and part of me admired it’s richness and strengths. Perhaps the greatest threat to this traditional way of life is in fact the modern ‘corporatised iwi’ with truckloads of money corrupting it.

      • bad12 6.1.2

        ”Economic Nationalism based upon the principles of Socialism???, pray tell me where is such a beast to be found,

        Perhaps i could be forgiven for mistaking your postulation as a call for National Socialism, it would appear to me at least that Maori have up to the point of the 49% sale of assets based upon the rivers in particular been behaving in a truly Socialist manner,

        Whilst never having expressly implied that their Mana over such has been given up to the Crown, Maori have allowed for the water use to generate electricity seeing this to be available to all and while the profits of such generation remain in the hands of the Crown, Maori could be said to have been benifitting in partnership with the rest of New Zealand from such generation and profit,

        I would dearly love for you to take your quaint notions of Socialism and it’s juxtaposition with your view of an accidental Maori hierarchy based upon birth befor the likes of the Tainui Parliament or the Ngai Tahu Rununga where i am sure your assertions would be met with deserved mirth,

        ALL those who hold positions in that Rununga and that Parliament are in fact the elected representatives of every Marae within the respective tribal Rohe,(area), AND,that Parliament and that Rununga then go on to elect/select those who manage their commercial interests,

        That to me sounds like decentralized practical Socialism of,by and for the people managing and distributing their assets and profits as those people see fit,

        i doubt if any of them would find cause nor need to apologize to any notions you may have about colonial socialism which to them has already been the means from the time the first sailing ships arrived for the removal of 99% of what they previously owned and administered under the most basic of Socialist institutions, family ties…

        • Populuxe1 6.1.2.1

          Wow Bad – you should be applauded for that wonderful impression of a patronising and arrogant twat. Bravo.
          Only some mean spirited low mentality would go out of their way to interpret “Economic Nationalism based upon the principles of Socialism” as being a call to Nazism – or perhaps that’s what passes for humour in your dark little corner of pseudo-intellectualism. Whatever, it doesn’t do you any credit.
          And no, not by any stretch of the imagination could family ties be considered a kind of decentralised socialism. Possibly you are thinking of the Mafia, or the Borgias, or some equally democratic social institution, both of which would seem to fit your criteria.
          Presumably yoou’re just trying to pick a fight, but I really can’t be arsed.

          • bad12 6.1.2.1.1

            Aw no not pseudo-intellectualism, now that really hurt not, my dark corner has just had a grand injection of humor…

          • Thisblogrocks 6.1.2.1.2

            Family ties = Whanaungatanga / hapu (extended family level tribal grouping)
            State / nation = Iwi

            Socialism:
            1. (Economics) an economic theory or system in which the means of production, distribution, and exchange are owned by the community collectively, usually through the state. It is characterized by production for use rather than profit, by equality of individual wealth, by the absence of competitive economic activity, and, usually, by government determination of investment, prices, and production levels Compare capitalism
            2. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) any of various social or political theories or movements in which the common welfare is to be achieved through the establishment of a socialist economic system.

            Traditionally I’d say it was in fact centralised socialism where a hapu or iwi would represent the state depending on the will of the kin groups within the hapu, goods were produced by the hapu and collectively traded. Common welfare was always the main concern in fact without the support of the people one could not lead even via chiefly descent, so a leader needed to be either a great orator or to have had success in war, growing crops, or any other successful actions seen as beneficial to the hapu as a whole.

            I welcome any comments or correction as this is only a product of considered thought and a dictionary definition of socialism lol

            In order to translate key Maori concepts and social structures into their best western counterpart is more about cultural awareness rather than imagination.

            However you do have a point with Iwi commercial entities who simply because of the system within which they operate are forced to become a part of the exploitation of workers and the perpetual drive for increased profits inherent in capitalism. The real challenge is balancing Tikanga with best business practice.

            Cheers.

            • Populuxe1 6.1.2.1.2.1

              The assumption that Tikanga Maori and Maoritanga are in any way binding on individual Maori is as cute as suggesting that the Ten Commandments are in any way binding on individual Christians should they choose to put their personal interests first. The assumption that a person of Maori ancestry is somehow a more morally perfect being than someone European is naive at best and patronising at worst, as is the assumption that all Maori are interested in traditional Maori concepts or indeed should be expected to be.

              • Uturn

                So you choose the “middle road” that all maori are probably divorced from their heritage, somewhat crooked, so hey, why not do as ol’ whitey wants? You imply there is no such thing as maori, since we are all individuals, and that any representation of maori culture is outdated, therefore out of context, therefore wrong.

                So lets take your view that, in an effort to avoid colonial cuteness, maori (whoever they are) are suddenly awarded the right to be completely self-determined in all things. Great news. Sense at last. Don’t hold your breath about any particular group caring whether they participate in the Nats plans or not, though. Why would they?

                Or you could realise that many maori acknowledge their heritage daily, in as much as pakeha try to abide by the ten commandments.

                A bloke sees his neighbour’s wife and thinks, “Wow, she looks nice. Getting involved with her would be wrong, though. No end of trouble”. So he wises up and doesn’t.

                Oh dear, he just lived one of the ten commandments. How did that happen? In your world everyone is adopting the extreme negetive position, fucking everything that moves. There’s bit of a reality disconnect.

                Thou shall not kill – legislated pakeha law. Most follow it.
                Thou shall not steal – legislated pakeha law. Most follow it.
                Thou shall not bear false witness – legislated pakeha law.

                But in your world, every pakeha is in prison for theft, murder and perjury or on their way there. So how much more are the maori who do follow their own cultural concepts morally superior/aware because the only people enforcing it is themselves?

                You’re right, not every single person in NZ who calls themselves maori is perfect. But that doesn’t mean that acknowledging reality within context is patronising, naive or oppressive. If it bothers you that much, do the right thing and hush up. Afterall, in any maori issue, only maori should speak first, when they see fit, and discussion on an internet forum disrespects all forms of traditional hierarchy.

                • Populuxe1

                  You must not quite have heard me up there on your high horse, Uturn, because you’re misrepresenting what I said.

                  So you choose the “middle road” that all maori are probably divorced from their heritage, somewhat crooked, so hey, why not do as ol’ whitey wants? You imply there is no such thing as maori, since we are all individuals, and that any representation of maori culture is outdated, therefore out of context, therefore wrong.

                  No, but there is a major disconnect between your odd construct “Maori” and the many distinct and individual iwi and hapu of the tangata whenua, including a great many urban Maori who do not identify closely with an iwi or hapu and will get diddly squat. There are also a considerable number of Maori who identify with an iwi or hapu but whose relationship with tikanga is personal, cherrypicked, and not an overly definitive factor in their daily lives. Your attempt to lump all Maori together is crass.

                  So lets take your view that, in an effort to avoid colonial cuteness, maori (whoever they are) are suddenly awarded the right to be completely self-determined in all things. Great news. Sense at last. Don’t hold your breath about any particular group caring whether they participate in the Nats plans or not, though. Why would they?

                  That doesn’t even make sense, so I’m not sure what you’re getting at. People should be free to support whatever political party they want. Why would they? Dunno. Ask

                  Paula Bennett
                  Simon Bridges
                  Aaron Gilmore
                  Tau Henare
                  Hekia Parata
                  Paul Quinn
                  Jami-Lee Ross
                  Georgina te Heuheu

                  Or you could realise that many maori acknowledge their heritage daily, in as much as pakeha try to abide by the ten commandments.

                  And that has precisely what to do with anything? “many”? Are those census figures. May Republican politicians claim to be devout Christians, but I wouldn’t buy a used car from them. Jeesh!

                  A bloke sees his neighbour’s wife and thinks, “Wow, she looks nice. Getting involved with her would be wrong, though. No end of trouble”. So he wises up and doesn’t.
                  Oh dear, he just lived one of the ten commandments. How did that happen? In your world everyone is adopting the extreme negetive position, fucking everything that moves. There’s bit of a reality disconnect.

                  You don’t get out much, do you.

                  Thou shall not kill – legislated pakeha law. Most follow it.
                  Thou shall not steal – legislated pakeha law. Most follow it.
                  Thou shall not bear false witness – legislated pakeha law.

                  Separation of church and state. Bible says some very unfortunate things about homosexuals, women, slavery, children, and people who eat shellfish, quite contrary to our laws.

                  But in your world, every pakeha is in prison for theft, murder and perjury or on their way there. So how much more are the maori who do follow their own cultural concepts morally superior/aware because the only people enforcing it is themselves?

                  That makes no sense. Have you been drinking? By the way, given the disproportionate numbers of Maori in prison, one might wonder if Maori tanga and tikanga have been of much benefit to their moral condition – after all you seem to be implying that the vast majority of Maori are all conditioned to think and behave in a certain way due to either ethnicity or culture – to use your logic.

                  You’re right, not every single person in NZ who calls themselves maori is perfect. But that doesn’t mean that acknowledging reality within context is patronising, naive or oppressive. If it bothers you that much, do the right thing and hush up. Afterall, in any maori issue, only maori should speak first, when they see fit, and discussion on an internet forum disrespects all forms of traditional hierarchy.

                  Well I don’t have to “hush up” because my freedom of speech is guaranteed by NZ constitutional law (not so if I were a woman on most North Island Marae, though). “But that doesn’t mean that acknowledging reality within context is patronising, naive or oppressive.” – it is when you misrepresent the context to fit the kind of romantic bullshit expounded by white people about the “other” from Rousseau to Margaret Mead. So no, not all human beings of any race or culture are perfect, but let’s not try and camouflage the fact with something as arbitrary as the colour of one’s skin giving anyone innate rights denied others.

      • bad12 6.1.3

        Psssst, it amazes me that you cannot see the contradiction in talking of Maori as though they have some duty to buy into Your view of some utopian ‘other’ planet where everything is owned by the masses who all exercise equal control and distribution of such,

        In this voting democracy it aint ever going to happen, perhaps some elite will someday seize upon this utopian ideal and ‘impose’ it upon us all, betcha tho that ‘they’ would keep all the best bits for ‘them’…

  7. RedLogix 7

    Yes.

    Moari never lost their crucial community/collective institutions, the iwi, hapu and marae. For while colonisation has set them on the back-foot for over 150 years, they fought to hold onto their communal social nature… a priceless social asset.

    And now slowly pakeha are waking to up to that which has been robbed from us and what we’ve lost when the neo-libs and corporates sold us ‘freedom’ in exchange for our communities.

  8. But as I understand this is not really about water, but the rights to a substantial percentage of shares in the 49% of Mighty River. The water issue is a vehicle only.

  9. prism 9

    Fortran
    Probably Maori are thinking on more than view. There are both the shares giving a part interest if the government is set on selling, pragmatic view, and as well the water as a taonga and so the kaitiaki role can be carried out, and the access and rights to what is becoming a scarce asset at present being supplied at little cost to those who have got fist in the queue and who make capital gain from it, so acting pragmatically and with high Maori cultural values.

    • OneTrack 9.1

      Why do we only hear about taonga and katiaki now that there is money to be made?

      I am not sure why there is so much cheer leading going on here for this claim. It sounds like a cure that is far worse than the disease.

  10. millsy 10

    So what happens if and when the WT ‘awards’ water ownership to Maori? Ill tell you.

    Rates and water charges go up because iwi will charge councils for water
    The kiwi tradition of whitebaiting will be out the door, because iwi will put a stop to that somehow
    The kiwi tradition of a summer’s day at the swimming hole will be gone because Maori will stop that
    Want to catch eels at the local creek? Nope, cant do that anymore
    White water rafting and kayaking? Nope, not unless you buy a permit from iwi.

    And so on and so forth…

    • Populuxe1 10.1

      “Taonga” is a bit of a weasel word in this context.
      I fully recognise and support Maori right to self-determination of identity as tangata whenua as regards language and culture, but I do not believe that such determination should extend to exclusionary legal preference over vital national infrastructure and resources not extended to other citizens – any more than I think Papal Infallibility should have any authority over New Zealand citizens who happen to be Catholic. In my mind, the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007) is redundant because it has always been superseded by the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948).
       
      <satire> If you think about it, it would mean that several thousand Australian citizens would suddenly have more authority over New Zealand infra structure and resources because they belong to a certain Iwi of Hapu than non-Maori New Zealand citizens. I don’t believe giving significant shares in our electricity producers to the cast of The GC is any more desirable than selling them to any other off-shore corporate entity. </satire>
       

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Stalled TPP chance for wider discussion
    Failure to get the TPP agreement across the line gives New Zealanders an opportunity to put more pressure on the Government not to sign away our sovereignty, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.“New Zealand land, dairy and medicines are up for… ...
    1 day ago
  • Will poor TPP dairy outcome stop National selling out our homes?
    After failing to protect the right to stop foreign speculators buying our houses it’s clear the Government is not going to get wins on dairy in their TPP negotiations either, Labour’s Trade and Export spokesperson David Parker says. “Labour has… ...
    3 days ago
  • Feeling aspirational
    Yesterday the Rich List showed the number of people who have over 50 million of wealth had increased by another 15 people since last year. Collectively this group are now worth 55 billion, an increase of over 7% since last… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Feeling aspirational
    Yesterday the Rich List showed the number of people who have over 50 million of wealth had increased by another 15 people since last year. Collectively this group are now worth 55 billion, an increase of over 7% since last… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Feeling aspirational
    Yesterday the Rich List showed the number of people who have over 50 million of wealth had increased by another 15 people since last year. Collectively this group are now worth 55 billion, an increase of over 7% since last… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Bennett’s legacy a test for Tolley
    Former Social Development Minister Paula Bennett has been thrown under the bus by her successor after its been suggested that Ms Bennett gave the green light to an ‘unethical’ observational study of high-risk children, Labour Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.… ...
    3 days ago
  • Submission to Greater Christchurch Earthquake Recovery: Transition to Rege...
    Thank you for the opportunity to contribute to the Draft Transition Recovery Plan on behalf of the New Zealand Labour Party.  It is important that the citizens of Canterbury have a voice in the governance of the next step of… ...
    3 days ago
  • Troubled school wanted $25,000 dollars to fence farm
    The troubled Whangaruru charter school asked Hekia Parata for $25,000 to fence the school farm at the expense of spending on teaching, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “This unbelievable revelation comes hard on the heels of Hekia Parata’s decision to… ...
    3 days ago
  • Troubled school wanted $25,000 dollars to fence farm
    The troubled Whangaruru charter school asked Hekia Parata for $25,000 to fence the school farm at the expense of spending on teaching, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “This unbelievable revelation comes hard on the heels of Hekia Parata’s decision to… ...
    3 days ago
  • Government report on sexual & family violence a good first step
    Yesterday the Government released the cabinet paper on progress on the work programme of the Ministerial Group on Family Violence and Sexual Violence. Along with the Human Rights Commissioner and Women’s Refuge, I really welcome the report. I’m relieved that… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Government report on sexual & family violence a good first step
    Yesterday the Government released the cabinet paper on progress on the work programme of the Ministerial Group on Family Violence and Sexual Violence. Along with the Human Rights Commissioner and Women’s Refuge, I really welcome the report. I’m relieved that… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Prisoner voting disqualification and the Bill of Rights Act
    In 2010, National rammed the Electoral (Disqualification of Sentenced Prisoners) Amendment Bill through Parliament. Paul Quinn’s Member’s Bill existed because Paul Quinn thought anyone who’d been imprisoned was a serious offender, and serious offenders had ‘forfeited’ their right to vote.… ...
    GreensBy David Clendon MP
    4 days ago
  • Mainfreight ‘appalled’ by Government’s rail madness
    The Government has been given a serve by New Zealand-based international trucking and logistics firm Mainfreight which says it lacks a national transport strategy, and has treated rail badly, Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The company has told shareholders it… ...
    4 days ago
  • National’s Health and Safety Reform Bill: less safety and fewer rights at...
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions is embarking on a campaign to fight the changes that weaken the Health and Safety Reform bill. As part of the campaign the CTU has organised vigils with the display of 291 crosses… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    4 days ago
  • All options need to be put on meat sector table
    Farmers must be given every assurance that all potential risks have been considered before Silver Fern Farms opens its door to foreign equity, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The ongoing saga involving the meat sector and amalgamation has… ...
    4 days ago
  • Flag the referendum if 50% or more don’t vote
    Labour has moved to have the second flag referendum canned if the first attracts fewer than half the eligible number of voters, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “John Key has already wasted more than $8 million on his vanity project… ...
    5 days ago
  • 90,000 cars reclassified in botched ACC ratings
    New figures obtained by Labour show the ACC Minister’s botched motor vehicle levy system has resulted in 90,000 vehicles having to be reclassified so far – at a cost of $6 million, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “Nikki Kaye’s… ...
    5 days ago
  • Brutal health cuts confirmed, crucial services suffer
    Chronic under-funding by National has seen the health budget slashed by $1.7 billion in just five years, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A report by Infometrics, commissioned by Labour, shows health funding has been cut in four of the… ...
    5 days ago
  • Meth ring under Serco’s nose
    The news that two Serco inmates have been arrested for helping to run a methamphetamine ring from prison should be the final straw and see their contract cancelled, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “National has stood by Serco despite… ...
    6 days ago
  • Ministers failing women and their own targets
    New figures showing just five Ministers have met the Government’s own reduced targets for appointing women to state sector boards is evidence National is failing Kiwi women, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The Ministry for Women’s 2015 Gender… ...
    6 days ago
  • Charges up for some as funding up for grabs
    A proposal being considered by the Government would see some people having to pay more for health care and district health boards forced to fight amongst themselves to fund regional health services, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says “Information leaked… ...
    6 days ago
  • Stop experimenting on kids
    The trouble with the Charter school model is that it is a publicly funded experiment on children. The National Government has consistently put its desire to open charter schools ahead of the safety of the children in them, ignoring repeated… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    6 days ago
  • Bank puts the squeeze on mid Canterbury farmers
    News that an unnamed bank in Ashburton has put a receiver on notice over financially vulnerable farmers will send a chill through rural New Zealand, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Government needs to work with  New Zealand’s banks… ...
    7 days ago
  • Key is trading away New Zealand land and homes
    John Key yesterday admitted what National dishonestly refused to confirm in Parliament last week – he is trading away New Zealand’s right to control who buys our homes and land, says Opposition leader Andrew Little. “The Prime Minister must now… ...
    7 days ago
  • Razor gang takes scalpel to health
    Plans by the Government to take a scalpel to democratically elected health boards are deceitful and underhand, coming just months after an election during which they were never signalled, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says “Leaked documents reveals a radical… ...
    7 days ago
  • Spin lines show a department in chaos
    Corrections Spin Doctors sending their place holder lines to journalists instead of responding to serious allegations shows the scale of chaos at the department over the Serco scandal, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “As more and more serious allegations… ...
    1 week ago
  • Court ruling shows law should never have been passed
    A High Court ruling that a law banning prisoners from voting is inconsistent with a properly functioning democracy should be a wake-up call for the Government, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. In an unprecedented ruling Justice Paul Heath has… ...
    1 week ago
  • Judicial Review Gamble Pays Off for Problem Gambling Foundation
    Congratulations are due to the Problem Gambling Foundation (PGFNZ) who have won their legal case around how the Ministry of Health decided to award their contracts for problem gambling services to another service provider. Congratulations are due not just for&hellip; ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Environmental Protection Agency appoints GE advocate as new CEO
    This week, the Environmental Protection Authority Amendment Bill passed its first reading in Parliament. The Bill puts protection of the environment into the core purpose of the Environmental Protection Authority. This month, Dr Allan Freeth, the former Chief Executive of… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • Charanpreet Dhaliwal death demands genuine health and safety reform
    The killing of a security guard on his first night on the job is exactly the kind of incident that National’s watered-down health and safety bill won’t prevent, says Te Atatu MP Phil Twyford. The coronial inquest into 22-year-old Charanpreet… ...
    1 week ago
  • Arbitrary sanctions hit children hardest
    Increasing numbers of single parents are being penalised under a regime that is overly focussed on sanctions rather than getting more people into work, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “Figures, obtained through Parliamentary questions show 3000 more sanctions,… ...
    1 week ago
  • Hekia just won’t face the facts
    Hekia Parata’s decision to keep troubled Whangaruru Charter school open despite being presented with a catalogue of failure defies belief, goes against official advice and breaks a Government promise to close these schools if they were failing, says Labour’s Education… ...
    1 week ago
  • No more silent witnesses
    Yesterday I attended the launch of a new initiative developed by and for Asian, Middle eastern and African youth to support young people to name and get support if there is domestic violence at home. The impact on children of… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • Single Use Plastic Bags campaign – Some wins and some green-washing
    As we near the end of Plastic Free July I’m nearing the conclusion of my Say No To Plastic Bag tour when I will have completed all 30 of my public meetings. The campaign was designed to work with community… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Single Use Plastic Bags campaign – Some wins and some green-washing
    As we near the end of Plastic Free July I’m nearing the conclusion of my Say No To Plastic Bag tour when I will have completed all 30 of my public meetings. The campaign was designed to work with community… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Minister must take responsibility for problem gambling debacle
    The Government’s handling of the Problem Gambling Foundation’s axing in a cost-cutting exercise has been ham-fisted and harmful to some of the most vulnerable people in society, Associate Health Labour spokesperson David Clark says.“Today’s court ruling overturning the axing of… ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour will not support TPP if it undermines NZ sovereignty
    The Labour Party will not support the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement unless key protections for New Zealanders are met, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.“Labour supports free trade. However, we will not support a TPP agreement that undermines New Zealand’s sovereignty. ...
    1 week ago
  • Coleman can’t ignore latest warnings
    Resident doctors have advised that a severe staffing shortage at North Shore Hospital is putting patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “They say a mismatch between staffing levels and patient workloads at North Shore has… ...
    1 week ago
  • ACC must remove barriers to appeals
    The Government must prioritise removing barriers to justice for ACC claimants following a damning report by Acclaim Otago, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “ACC Minister Nikki Kaye must urgently scrap her flawed plan to remove claimant’s right to redress… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Six months’ paid parental leave back on the agenda
    Six months’ paid parental leave is back on the agenda and a step closer to reality for Kiwi parents after Labour’s new Member’s Bill was pulled from today’s ballot, the Bill’s sponsor and Labour MP Sue Moroney says. “My Bill… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Sole parents at risk of having no income
    New requirements for sole parents to undertake a reapplication process after a year is likely to mean a large number will face benefit cancellations, but not because they have obtained work, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “Increasing numbers… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Juking the Welfare Stats Again
    Last week the government’s major initiative to combat child poverty (a paltry $25 increase) was exposed for what it is, a lie. The Government, through the Budget this year, claims to be engaging in the child poverty debate, but instead,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • OCR rate cut a result of flagging economy
    The Reserve Bank's decision to cut the Official Cash Rate to 3 per cent shows there is no encore for the so-called 'rock star' economy, says Labour's Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.   "Today's interest rate cut comes off the back… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Reboot to an innovation economy, an Internet economy and a clean economy
    In my short 33 years on this planet we’ve seen phenomenal technological, economic and social change, and it’s realistic to expect the next 33 will see even more, even faster change. You can see it in the non-descript warehouse near… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill that puts the environment into the EPA passes first hurdle
    A Bill that puts the environment squarely into legislation governing the Environmental Protection Authority passed its first reading today, says Meka Whaitiri.  “I introduced this member’s bill as the current law doesn’t actually make protecting the environment a goal of… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Key’s KiwiSaver deception exposed
    KiwiSaver statistics released today expose John Key's claim that the cutting of the kickstart payment "will not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join KiwiSaver” to be duplicitous, says Labour Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “Official… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minimum Wage Amendment Bill to protect contractors
    All New Zealanders should be treated fairly at work. Currently, the law allows non-employment relationships to be used to get around the minimum wage. This is unfair, says Labour MP David Parker. “The Minimum Wage (Contractor Remuneration) Amendment Bill, a… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill raises bar to protect Kiwi farmland
    The Government’s rubber-stamping of every one of the nearly 400 applications from overseas investors to buy New Zealand farm land over the last three years proves tougher laws are needed, Labour MP Phil Goff says. “In the last term of… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Costly flag referendum should be dumped
    John Key must ditch the flag referendum before any more taxpayer money is wasted, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Millions of dollars could be saved if the Prime Minister called a halt to this hugely expensive, and highly unpopular, vanity… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nats letting Serco off scot free
    Government members have prevented Parliament’s Law and Order select committee from getting answers out of a senior Serco director about the fight clubs being run at Mt Eden prisons, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “At today’s Law and Order… ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere