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Punitive, anti-beneficiary Bill- opposition needed!

Written By: - Date published: 10:28 am, March 20th, 2013 - 47 comments
Categories: act, benefits, child welfare, class war, education, greens, human rights, labour, nz first, paula bennett, welfare - Tags:

The Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill is up for its second reading in the House this afternoon.  It is first up on the provisional order paper for today (i.e. probably some time after 2pm, which would likely be after Question Time and the General Debate):

Parents are very unhappy with it, as reported in this Voxy article:

The Select Committee’s report on the Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill recommends that children of beneficiaries aged 3-4 be compelled to attend an approved Early Childhood Education (ECE) programme for a yet-to-be-determined minimum time per week.

Yet according to the Committee’s report, an “overwhelming number” of submissions on the Bill expressed concern about the Social Obligations, which would force the preschool-aged children of beneficiaries to attend 15 hours’ ECE per week. …

“The Committee majority recommended that parents should be allowed to home educate their 5-year-olds under the Bill, but does not provide the same home-care option for 3-4-year-olds,” she says.

“This concession will do nothing to make parents happy with the Bill. They want the option to keep their preschool children at home. That’s all. They want to make the best decisions for their children. Many children simply are not ready to be left in a strange environment for any length of time at age 3.”

In addition, the Social Obligations targeting beneficiaries for compulsory health care will remain in the Bill under the Select Committee’s recommendations. “The New Zealand Law Society, in their submission, stated that these obligations were discriminatory because they treated a group of people differently based on employment status,” explains Mrs Smith. “We had hoped that the Select Committee might address that serious flaw in their majority report, but they did not.”

Mrs Smith says that the thousands of parents, grandparents, and young people who made submissions on the discriminatory and coercive Social Obligations will be unhappy and disappointed with the majority’s report.

The Report from the Select Committee, includes the minority reports from opposition parties.

Labour Party Minority Report Introduction (p.13):

Labour stands in strong opposition to this bill. Introducing reforms such as these at a time of high unemployment, and without removing barriers to employment such as the high cost of child care and inadequate training and education opportunities, will inevitably fail. We believe the framework for this bill is wrong. Rather than starting from the assumption that those who seek support from the state want to work, this bill assumes the opposite. It is focused on a sanction based regime, and moves away from service delivery that is focused on an individual’s circumstances and intensive case management.

Green Party Minority Report Introduction (p.16)

The Green Party opposes this bill. We believe the paternalistic approach represents a widening breach of our fundamental social contract which unjustifiably compromises the human rights of many beneficiaries. We believe the Government should focus on assisting those who are already desperate to work rather than spreading what are still scarce resources across a range of people who are not ready or able to work.

NZ First Minority Report Conclusion: (p.21)

New Zealand First supports the measures to protect the interest of children, but drastic reforms will be imposed on a vulnerable group in our society. We do not believe that these welfare reforms will lead to less people on the benefit.

At the moment we face a job market crisis, and with these drastic sanctions and dramatic reforms to be introduced in this bill, there is no indication that beneficiaries will end up in paid employment. This dog-whistle approach will feed the increasing poverty gap and develop a double standard New Zealand.

We support initiatives that will prove to decrease welfare dependency, but we are not convinced that this bill will in fact transpire the expected outcomes.

Yet it looks like NZ First will still not vote against the Bill.   The Home Education Foundation is asking people to phone or email NZ First MPs, Peter Dunne, John Banks, Brendan Horan and National MPs to urge them to vote against the Bill.

This Bill is a further step in Paula Bennett’s vicious, punitive, bennie-bashing campaign, promoted by Key, English and the rest of  NAct.

h/t xtasy and Barbara.

47 comments on “Punitive, anti-beneficiary Bill- opposition needed!”

  1. johnm 1

    I’m shocked and horrified at the fascist compelling of beneficiaries’ children aged 3-4 to attend ECE. A sort of punitive detention and separation from their parents. This compulsion is clearly discriminatory and contravenes the UN declaration of human rights.

    • karol 1.1

      Yes, and in the voxy article that I referred to, the Law Society submission is reported to have pointed out where the bill breaches the NZ Bill of Rights.

      Which includes Freedom from discrimination. Thjat clause refers to the definitions in the Human Rights Act (1993).

      the prohibited grounds of discrimination are—
      (a)sex, which includes pregnancy and childbirth:…

      disability, …

      employment status, which means—
      (i)being unemployed; or
      (ii)being a recipient of a benefit under the Social Security Act 1964 or an entitlement under the Accident Compensation Act 2001: …

      family status, which means—
      (i)having the responsibility for part-time care or full-time care of children or other dependants; or..

  2. johnm 2

    The UN declaration of Human Rights:

    Article 5.
    No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
    The compulsion factor here is clearly “degrading treatment” .

    Article 1.
    All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.

    The compulsion factor contravenes article 1 “equal in dignity ” This is not so for these parents on the benefit.

    Compulsion contravenes the preamble: “Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world, ”

    ” inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world, ”

    http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/

  3. johnm 3

    It is not law that working parents place their children aged 3-4 in ECE. Therefore to compel the same on benefit recipient parents contravenes the 1993 human rights avt of New Zealand:
    “Prohibited grounds of discrimination” :
    Section 1. k :
    “employment status, which means—

    (i) being unemployed; or

    (ii) being a recipient of a benefit under the Social Security Act 1964 or an entitlement under the Accident Compensation Act 2001:”

    You din’t have to go through all this to realise it stinks! :-(

  4. muzza 4

    These are anti humanity bills which are targeting vulnerable groups, in the most evil of ways.

    Our governance structure has failed to protect the people if this country, therefore it is now defunct.

    Looking to the existing structure to defend people, sadly pointless!

    • One Tāne Huna 4.1

      Suggestions as to how to entrench more robust defences. On a postcard.

      • muzza 4.1.1

        Stop looking to put definitions around everything for a start, then get off your arse, realise that NZ is the people in it, not the bloody government people want to point to as *democracy*, and some vote of every three years..

        Where do you reckon NZ is going to be in 5-10 years on this track!

        I used 5-10, as any longer perid of time than that, I don’t reckon we will want to be here, if there is sign of a robust defense, it will be well and truly over!

  5. AsleepWhileWalking 5

    What is particularly troubling with this nasty piece of legislation is the way any dissenting voice is overruled without consideration to the opposing argument. This has become a clear feature of the current National government that is creeping ever closer to dictatorship than democracy.

    • One Tāne Huna 5.1

      Well said.

      It’s shameful to read about Members of Parliament behaving like rubber stamps rather than exercising their duties to critical oversight.

  6. Populuxe1 6

    I am totally against legally compelling beneficiaries to do anything that doesn’t relate directly to their WINZ contract, which is definitely not to say I don’t think ECE is of great benefit to children.

  7. johnm 7

    Like Yankee Kee who got where he is by being a good looking tailors dummy, now the great Kiwi dumbed down public think it’s great to emulate this empty sack of sh@t. F@ck you gadget absorbed selfish money grubbing scum ! :-(

  8. tracey 8

    Aparently the cost of implementing car park tax outweighs the intake… How much does this govt spend on chasing so called bludgers versus the number actuallybelieved to be defrauding winz?

  9. tracey 9

    Aparently the cost of implementing car park tax outweighs the intake… How much does this govt spend on chasing so called bludgers versus the number actuallybelieved to be defrauding winz? How much to actually enforce this edict about 3-4 year olds

    • karol 9.1

      I don’t know. But it’s a futile Bill, and fails to deal with the crucial issues like providing more jobs. Bennett et all have ignored many of the more positive suggestions raised in select committee, based on evidence from those working in the relevant areas.

      Bennett read her speech today, and it was a lack-lustre effort, showing little real conviction. I wonder who wrote it? She claimed to be all for helping beneficiaries to get into work – according to her, based on her own experience, one mundane job can be part of a gradual step up to better jobs – different times, “sweetie”, and many of the the enabling services have been ripped away by your government.

      Turei, on he other hand, delivered Jan Logie’s speech. Logie, for some unknown reason could not attend the reading, but prepared the speech. Turei read parts of it with conviction and seemed to add her own personal observations. It seems, under this law, one of the “ECE” places to which single parent beneficiaries may be required to send their children, is a woman down the road caring for other children in her home at the same time. Crazy or what? Where are the anti-“nanny state” righties now the choices are being removed from good parents who are in circumstances not of their making?

      Bennett claimed increased numbers of people going off benefits, and into work, and that her bill was meant to tackle the issue of long term dependencies on social security.

      Yet, the Roy Morgan poll out in the last week, shows that NZ now has record proportion of people “under-employed”. What sort of part time jobs are beneficiaries being pressured into? Ones with “prospects”?

      Bennett claimed Labour’s Minority Report contained lies, but didn’t elaborate.

      Ardern also delivered a speech, with conviction and not based on just reading a prepared version – she responded to specific points in Bennett’s speech, and attacked National’s use of bennie-bashing, especially by drip feeding parts of the Bill at moments when NAct was under fire on other issues.

      • xtasy 9.1.1

        Bennett was speaking like a broken record when she started to introduce the bill back into Parliament. Yes, she did not seem too passionate or convinced, rather caught in a trap, where there is no way out but continuing the commenced attack modus operandi, which was the start operandi of it all.

        Ardern could not do much wrong today, but she again disappointed me. It was follow up speakers like Phil Twyford and Sua William Sio and some others that delivered more convincing arguments and more passion against this crap that National is selling as “helping” people on benefits, which is a total perversion of the true intent.

        Metiria Turei did OK, but I was disappointed that Jan did not speak herself. But she will have good reasons for not being there. She has also so many spokesperson roles, it is too much to squeeze them all in with the so important welfare portfolio role.

        I do pity her at times.

        As for NZ First, I do not trust Asenati Lole Taylor. I think that news I read on AAAP’s website indicated that some info was dropped that she was rather supportive of the bill. But then again, it may have been misunderstood, or Winston may have blown the last whistle, saying, hey, do not go that way, this is NOT what we support (at least not in this form).

        So the votes were 61 to 60, the usual narrow vote, and I thank Maori MPs and Hone for joining the opposition on this. It is an abysmal piece of legislation, and many, endless issues will come out of it, when it becomes law.

        • karol 9.1.1.1

          Twyford started a bit lack lustre, but got more convincing as his speech went on. And he introduced some important details about the select committee submissions.

          Why did Ardern disapoint?

          I noted in the article on Stuff, she is reported as saying “he reforms did little more than respond to rhetoric,”. I think I’ve said this before about Ardern – she sometimes tends to use middle class bureaucratic kind of language, rather than that of everyday Kiwis.

          • xtasy 9.1.1.1.1

            karol: That is it, it disappoints me that she keeps repeating the same phrases, and it was also again, early in her speech, the criticism of Bennett, that she did not get people into work and did not reduce benefit numbers.

            There again, I felt, her rather “market driven” thinking came in, that benefit numbers must be reduced to show results. Only later did she try to go into details about the reforms, but she did not sufficiently raise the injustices and the nonsense of the whole agenda, as investment requires money to be put into health and rehab care, which is not at all being offered.

            Bennett could be taken to the cleaners, if Ardern had done her homework, and I myself sent her some of the stuff I published at least in part on TS here. But then again, who is some individual with a foreign name and some intense comments, as even Labour rather have corporate agencies deliver reports to them.

            So this shows the alienation again, between all major parties, the way they operate, and how they have lost contact with the base of the population. It will lead to them paying a high price for all this. You cannot overrule and dominate and lecture from the top too long, eventually the rot will show and set in, and nobody will believe and trust them. Labour is there now, and it is getting worse. I am waiting for the same disease to hit damned Key and Nats.

  10. …um…what was it that National had to say about Labour and Nanny State again?…..

  11. karol 11

    Paual Bennett has the astonishing preference to follow the advice in an NZ Herald editorial re- her policies, rather than follow expert advice – as stated in Question Time today:

    Metiria Turei: Why did the Minister then ignore the strong and persistent warnings from the Ministry of Health that her welfare reform sanctions for Well Child / Tāmariki Ora checks would cause “substantial negative impacts on families and to vulnerable children, including risks of increased maltreatment and neglect.”?

    Hon PAULA BENNETT: It would be fair to say that there is a range of advice that has come on as to whether or not sanctions within the benefit system are actually what is best for children. Certainly, what I have seen is that sanctions actually work and the advice I have got says exactly that. I could take you to the New Zealand Herald editorial of 13 September 2012, which I think wraps it up quite well. It said: “It would make the child suffer for the parent’s failing—but then the child is probably suffering anyway. A benefit cut would be preceded by three reminders to comply. Defiance to that degree would signal something seriously amiss.”

    Unbelievable!

  12. xtasy 12

    Much relief I got, after some initial concerns this morning, also expressed by Auckland Action Against Poverty (AAAP) yesterday, that after all, NZ First has voted AGAINST this bill in its second reading phase this afternoon. I was already getting quite irritated reading AAAP’s comment on their website late last night, suggesting that they received information that NZ First supported the bill.

    That was at least qualified today in Parliament. Asenati Lole Taylor has in the past expressed some rather “dim” views of certain beneficiaries failing to live up to expectations, and while this may be justified in some individual cases, one should never assume that beneficiaries in general are not motivated, are drinking and drugging to just have “fun”, are irresponsible parents, or whatever.

    Again, one must ask very seriously, even if some may think this bill may in part make “sense”, what is the government doing to actually provide the support services and treatment for sole parents, for sick and disabled, to get “assisted” into a position that enables them to look for and perhaps take up work.

    I made references to the following before, that proves that National are selling us crap:

    Welfare reforms and health sector reforms: How the dots can be joined together –

    In 2007 and 2008 the National Party repeatedly fed the media with selected few stories about „GP bullying“ – by claimants of the sickness benefit. Work and Income’s Principal Health Advisor Dr Bratt seemed to grab that topic up quite willingly then. Now though it seems GPs get “bullied” (or rather “convinced to do”) what MSD and WINZ under the present government want them to do.

    Since National’s been in government, they’ve appointed and promote selected professional people into key jobs in the public health and welfare sectors. Most, if not all, appear to be resolute proponents for adopting a “firm” approach to health care and welfare. It can all be sourced back to similar moves made in the UK under the auspices of Professor Mansel Aylward, former UK DWP Chief Medical Officer, now consulting MSD and at least one NZ Health Board. He’s still in charge of a department at Cardiff University.

    These key persons are resolutely pushing ahead with an already decided agenda behind the scenes, by bringing in changes in training, recruiting, lobbying and influencing existing and prospective medical practitioners and other health professionals. The welfare reforms before Parliament are just part of the greater agenda. The Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Act is largely only intended to deliver the “framework” for the UK system in welfare and work capacity assessments done by selected medical professionals, that is intended to be introduced.

    The Select Committee process with hearing submissions is likely to change little, like with other bills the NatACT government has hammered through already.

    Here are another abundance of sources for info that can enlighten readers:

    http://www.nzohna.org.nz/uploaded/Dr%20David%20Beaumont%20New%20Horizons%2013%209%202012.pdf
    (Presentation by Dr David Beaumont: ‘Welfare Reform in New Zealand – Relevance to the Workplace‘‚ as part of a forum called ‘New Horizons: Rebuilding Health and Safety on Solid Ground’; Christchurch 13 September 2012)

    http://www.fitforwork.co.nz/dr-david-beaumonts-message-to-doctors-conference-medical-certification-can-be-fraught-with-problems-for-gps
    (Presenting at the General Practice Conference and Medical Exhibition of 11-12 June 2011, Fit For Work Medical Director Dr David Beaumont emphasised the vital role of New Zealand GPs in “helping” their patients return to work)

    http://www.fitforwork.co.nz/david-beaumont-and-colleagues-presenting-on-health-benefits-of-work
    (“News” fr. “Fit For Work”, by Dr D. Beaumont, featuring Kevin Morris, Director, ACC, at a forum organised by AFOEM and the Royal Australasian College of Physicians; 12.05.2012)

    http://nz.linkedin.com/pub/david-beaumont/2a/780/943
    (Linked In page of Dr Beaumont, formerly also working for ‘Atos Origin Healthcare’ in the UK. He’s been promoting the UK style medical and work capacity tests for many years; he’s also been advising MSD here in NZ)

    http://www.wellnz.co.nz/about_us/press_release_details.asp?pressID=36&bhcp=1
    (On the Australasian Faculty of Occupational and Environmental Medicine’s release of a new position paper, entitled “Realising the health benefits of work.”, 25.05.2010; see the known persons involved!!!)

    http://www.healthworkforce.govt.nz/about-us/board-members
    (Dr Des Gorman, well known from his advisory role to ACC for many years, and for some highly controversial recommendations. He’s now also “boss” of ‘Health Work Force NZ’, set up to develop recruitment and training strategies for health sector employees in the NZ health sector)

    http://www.fmhs.auckland.ac.nz/faculty/staffct/staff_details.aspx?staffID=64676F72303130
    (Dr Des Gorman, Associate Dean at the Medical School of Auckland Uni)

    http://wellsaid.co.nz/inside-acc/prof-des-gorman-delighted-to-join-acc-board/
    (now Dr Gorman is also sitting on the ACC Board, appointed by guess whom? Paula Rebstock! I am wondering, whether he is also still on the ‘National Health Board’)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QknNdOhOkr8
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aCecwuwCHb4
    (2 older TV documentaries on ACC cases involving Dr Gorman, referring to “illness belief” and mental health as reasons for otherwise “physical” suffering)

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/6930331/Rebstock-appointment-to-welfare-reform-board-concerns (stuff.co.nz on the appointment of P. Rebstock as Welfare Board chairperson)

    http://www.beehive.govt.nz/speech/speech-medical-professionals
    Paula Bennett’s speech to medical professionals, informing on the new welfare reforms, 26.09.12)

    Professor Mansel Aylward – 2 links with 2 views on his work and medical “research”:
    https://hcml.co.uk/?p=200
    http://downwithallthat.wordpress.com/category/dubious-academics-universities/cardiff-university/

    http://www.gpcme.co.nz/pdf/GP%20CME/Friday/C1%201515%20Bratt-Hawker.pdf
    (and let us not forget our “dear” MSD and WINZ Principal Health Advisor, Dr David Bratt, who likes to compare benefit dependence with drug dependence

    • ghostrider888 12.1

      Excellent Work x.

    • karol 12.2

      Thanks, xtasy.

      Yes, either NZ First were always going to vote against it, or they listened to people today asking them to vote that way. In the end it was a close vote: passed by 61 for – 60 against.

      National, Banks and Dunne for

      Maori, NZF, Green, Labour, Horan, Harawira – against.

      Down to Dunne again.

      • xtasy 12.2.1

        You mean Peter “Dunny”, I suppose, who has embarrassed himself so much with his bizarre, idiotic taxation agendas, now desperate to cling onto government, as they are keeping the spread on his bread and his high living expenses covered. Oh-hairyoooh, needs a clean number 2 clipper cut or “shave” for cleansing.

  13. Lefty 13

    Two simple questions needs to be asked of Labour, The Greens, NZ First, Mana and the Maori Party.

    “Will you reverse the beneficiary bashing legislation introduced by the Key Government in its entirity?

    “Will you reverse the benefit cuts made by the Bolger Government?

    Any party that doesn’t give a resounding Yes to these questions is full of shit when it comes to defending beneficiaries.

    • bad12 13.1

      While i agree with the point you are making i think you might be being a bit one eyed, the lange government introduced income tax to welfare benefits, the Clark government refused beneficiary children access to working for families,

      Dare i suggest to you now that Labour’s answer is very likely to be no…

  14. xtasy 14

    The hypocrisy about the NatACT government’s claims that they want to “help” sick and disabled back into some forms of work, which naturally will require some clear efforts and spending on health and rehab measures, becomes very clear, when for example looking at ‘Rising to the Challenge: The Mental Health and Addiction Service Development Plan 2012 – 2017′. Mental health conditions are the primary conditions that between about 30 to 40 per cent of sickness and invalid’s beneficiaries suffer from.

    That “plan” was introduced and presented by Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne just before Christmas 2012, which ensured that it got very little, if any media and public scrutiny, and it has indeed gone very much under the radar, as no media and no other forums are discussing the contents of this very concerning plan.

    At first sight it may sound somewhat reasonable what is proposed, but looking at the plan in detail, it is NOT encouraging, yes indeed extremely frightening, what is planned. There have been some proposals and plans published, to which the Royal College of NZ General Practitioners and other professional organisations have presented some interesting submissions.

    In short: They (Ministry of Health and apparently also MSD) will expect mental health and addiction sufferers to more or less “help themselves” (see the highlighted chapter 6 on page 6, and under “Self management education”, and also at the bottom of page 27 of the ‘Rising to the Challenge’ plan). Funding is not available, apart from funds to be taken out of other health services, and then to be re-allocated (see highlighted on page 8 under headline ‘Implementing the Plan’, and Part 1 starting at page 10).

    There is a lot of talk about smart-sounding, catchy policy slogans, phrases with ambiguous meanings – about better use of resources, integrating infrastructure and services, “cementing” and building on gains, increased access, better performance and measuring output, effectiveness, efficiencies, ring-fencing of spending, KPIs, supporting and strengthening the workforce, BUT nothing much of sufficient substance that we can expect. Measures are listed according to “rationale”, “measuring progress” and “priority actions”.

    But the plan also clearly states, that it takes a different approach to the health care than the so-called “Blueprint II” documents or plan do. There is in this ‘Rising to the Challenge’ plan rather much talk and focus on “prioritised actions”. Those that will not improve, co-operate and cope, they are likely to face “sanctions” and so forth – that is as beneficiaries dependent on MSD.

    In any case the plan appears to provide aligned steps to “motivate” or perhaps rather “force” mentally ill and addicted into some forms of work, as chapter 2 on page 28 of the plan ‘Rising to the Challenge’ reveals under heading “Employment specialists”, who appear to be planned to be employed by DHBs.

    NO real extra help of substance, just more pressure and less benefit entitlements and security – that is what will be in store for most. Bennett and NatACT get the big stick out and wave it to sick and disabled on benefits – to ready themselves for some forms of work, while treatment will largely be delivered by insufficiently trained GPs prescribing endless dosages of neuro-pharmaceuticals (see ‘Rising to the Challenge’, page 25, under heading “Reinforce evidence-enforced prescribing”), and no resources will be set aside for improving proper health care!

    This is exposing the double standards and lies of the government we presently have. Peter Dunne is also proving himself as a two faced operator as supporter of the government and Associate Minister for Health. Many of these submitters, representing leading health professional organisations, all working more or less at the coal face in mental health and addiction diagnosis, treatment, care and support, were initially not even properly informed or consulted on the plan drafted up in vague, ambiguous and un-detailed language. Much talk is about KPIs – typical corporate business term for “key performance indicators”.

    The submissions speak for themselves. If you have any time to read this, it will reveal to you what will be in store for mental health and addiction sufferers, many of whom have no option but to live off WINZ benefits. Shameful, all this is. Yet the Ministry of health has not even listed mental health care as part of their priorities for this year, by the way!

    Attached are submissions on the National led government’s “Rising to the Challenge” Mental Health and Addiction Service Development Plan 2012-2017! There are also some links with access to other very useful information:

    http://www.health.govt.nz/publication/rising-challenge-mental-health-and-addiction-service-development-plan-2012-2017 (website with option for downloading);
    http://www.rnzcgp.org.nz/submissions;
    http://www.nzma.org.nz/sites/all/files/NZMA%20Submission%20on%20the%20Mental%20Health%20%26%20Addiction%20Service%20Development%20Plan%202012-2017.pdf;
    http://www.nzcmhn.org.nz/files/file/338/Rising%20to%20the%20Challenge%20Feedback%20form%204102012.pdf;

    http://www.psychology.org.nz/cms_show_download.php?id=1753
    (Please see particularly also the last chapter on page 3 – under ‘2. Building infrastructure for integration between primary and specialist services’, where the ‘New Zealand Psychological Society’ does in their submission on the ‘Rising to the Challenge’ plan raise their great concerns on letting GPs treat mental health and addiction patients!);

    http://www.nzno.org.nz/Portals/0/Files/Documents/Activities/Submissions/2012-11%20Mental%20health%20and%20Addiction%20Service%20Development%20Plan,%20%20NZNO%20FINAL.pdf;
    anzasw.org.nz/documents/0000/0000/0031/Submission_of_Blueprint__MHASP_Final.pdf.

    Some additional info of interest:
    http://www.rnzcgp.org.nz/developments-in-general-practice-training
    http://www.mcnz.org.nz/news-and-publications/
    http://www.nzma.org.nz/policies/advocacy/consultation-documents
    http://www.nzma.org.nz/sites/all/files/nzmastrategicplan.pdf

    http://atosvictimsgroup.co.uk/2013/01/31/ex-atos-nurse-reveals-the-real-inside-story/

  15. karol 15

    Tuned in to 3rd Degree tonight for the first time:

    It sells itself as

    A New Kind of Current Affairs:

    3rd Degree brings a human face to the issues that matter to Kiwis, confronting the people who need to be confronted, probing the secrets that need to be uncovered, and celebrating New Zealanders who are living extraordinary lives.

    So, not looking at this Bill or anything significant in current political issues: a Kiwi guy unfairly kept in an Indonesian prison because of a $5,000 debt – unfair, but not the most pressing issue for a large number of Kiwis…. and now a losing sportsman….sheesh!

    This is not current affairs – it’s an infotainment magazine.

    • xtasy 15.1

      You are right, Karol, it is more “infotainment” selling as “current affairs” to largely younger generations who do in many cases not know what REAL current affairs used to look like. Admittedly there are a lot of young smart people, but I wish they would express their disapproval of such cheap shows we get.

      As for welfare not being reported on, I turned in and out of ‘Checkpoint’ on RNZ tonight, while watching TV news and Parliament, but I also missed any mention of the new bill being in Parliament for 2nd reading there tonight. It is a real, real worry, given the changes are so severe, and they will in the end affect so many, who are largely very unaware of what is happening.

      I will meet with a senior activist in the coming days, to discuss a few things, and to see what they are planning, and what else perhaps can be raised and done to increase public awareness and focus on this damning piece of policy that mercenary Paula Bandito is selling us.

      • karol 15.1.1

        The Tuhoe item on 3rd Degree is better.

        Stuff/Dom Post is about the only MSM platform that has an article on the Bill today.

        Doesn’t look in any depth at Bennett’s claims for less people going on to DPB.

        • bad12 15.1.1.1

          Seriously Karol??? what did you make of Tamiti Kruger’s assertion that He want’s to get all of Tuhoe off of welfare,

          i would suggest that if Tamiti had His way that the place would become a ghost town, Tariana Turia speaks this crap with the same forked tongue,

          Maori are on the bottom of the heap because first colonization put them there and second because the curse of silent racial oppression keeps them there…

          • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.1.1

            Last I heard, Maori corporate and business interests controlled about $35B in assets and trade. That’s a massive increase from just 10 years ago.

          • karol 15.1.1.1.2

            bad, I said the Tuhoe report was better – mainly because of the topic. I didn’t say it was great. It was a bit touristy, and superficial.

    • So far, Karol, your assessment seems on the ball.

      They haven’t touched on one single serious political issue. And god knows there are plenty to look into.

  16. risildowgtn 16

    Jacinda Arden delivered a very good speech. Bennett did not dribble much back………

    http://inthehouse.co.nz/node/17644

  17. Michael 17

    Middle NZ, and far too many rednecks, will probably applaud NACT’s beneficiary-bashing exercises. I suspect this is why Labour won’t pledge to reverse the changes: after all it set the direction back in 2007, with its disingenuous “work-focus” bill that provided for benefit cuts, in the form of “sanctions” if beneficiaries were unable to jump through all the “compliance” hoops whenever WINZ’ clerical staff cracked the whip. IIRC, it was none other than Rt Hon W Peters who got those provisions dropped from that Bill, although they are now back again in this one. Shame on National, shame on Labour, too (honourable exception for Jacinda Arden but note less than full-blooded support, and pledges, from caucus heavies).

  18. Introducing reforms such as these at a time of high unemployment, and without removing barriers to employment such as the high cost of child care and inadequate training and education opportunities, will inevitably fail.

    Good point. Rational thinking, excellent reason why this bill is badly timed. Doesn’t explain why Labour didn’t introduce reforms such as these when there was low unemployment and plenty of money for funding childcare, but still an excellent reason why it would be a bad idea to do it now.

    “This concession will do nothing to make parents happy with the Bill. They want the option to keep their preschool children at home. That’s all. They want to make the best decisions for their children. Many children simply are not ready to be left in a strange environment for any length of time at age 3.”

    Bad point. Irrational, emotive bollocks. A beneficiary’s kids are no less able to cope with professional childcare than anyone else’s. All this is saying is that the parents involved would rather not have WINZ hassling them about finding some income for themselves.

    “The New Zealand Law Society, in their submission, stated that these obligations were discriminatory because they treated a group of people differently based on employment status,” explains Mrs Smith. “We had hoped that the Select Committee might address that serious flaw in their majority report, but they did not.”

    Probably because the Select Committee was familiar with the proverb “He who pays the piper calls the tune.” Basically, the govt is free to make receipt of social welfare benefits contingent on whatever conditions it cares to name.

    • just saying 18.1

      Probably because the Select Committee was familiar with the proverb “He who pays the piper calls the tune.” Basically, the govt is free to make receipt of social welfare benefits contingent on whatever conditions it cares to name

      No, because it is unlawful to dsicriminate against persons based on their employment status. This means it contravenes our human rights legislation to force beneficiary parents to place their young children in care, if they don’t want to.

      Btw the state also provides the income of teachers, police, policy wonks……even WINZ employees. By your logic they should also be forced to put their children into care.

      • Psycho Milt 18.1.1

        No, because it is unlawful to dsicriminate against persons based on their employment status.

        A noble sentiment. But if I nip down to WINZ tomorrow morning and apply for my unemployment benefit, those guys are gonna discriminate the fuck out of me based on my employment status.

        Btw the state also provides the income of teachers, police, policy wonks……even WINZ employees. By your logic they should also be forced to put their children into care.

        By my logic, the govt is free to try and impose ridiculous and unreasonable conditions on those people’s employment. Which, as anyone involved in the state sector unions could tell you, it does.

        • just saying 18.1.1.1

          A noble sentiment.

          It’s not a sentiment it’s a fact written into our human rights legislation.
          Discrimination is unlawful. I’m not saying it doesn’t happen, but the fact is, it’s unlawful.

        • Colonial Viper 18.1.1.2

          And we’re the country who invented the 40 hour working week. How the mighty have fucked up.

          • xtasy 18.1.1.2.1

            That is why “the mighty” need to be thrown out of office, for good, and sent into jobs cleaning toilets to get a taste of minimum wage types of jobs that they see fit for the “underclass” to do. I am afraid that some Labour MPs may also need this treatment, as they should have fought this welfare reform BS tooth and nails, but they have NOT!

    • Colonial Viper 18.2

      Basically, the govt is free to make receipt of social welfare benefits contingent on whatever conditions it cares to name.

      No it’s not, morally and ethically.

      • xtasy 18.2.1

        Sadly in NZ the legal profession refrain from commenting on political matters. It should be considered by legal experts to do as in other countries, to speak out on serious legal issues in regards to poorly and inappropriately drafted legislation. Also should lawyers as advocates speak out on social issues, so that the poor and disadvantaged get their rights defended. Sadly this is NOT happening in NZ. Legal Aid is so restricted now, the poor and poorly informed have virtually NO means to defend themselves agains government dictate and abuse in whatever areas, particularly in welfare.

        That is also partly why the affected are so mute on these welfare reforms. They just have resigned to being powerless, voiceless and ignored all the time, and Labour during their last term did not do much to enable and empower the affected. The dictatorship in NZ Aotearoa is working “well” for the ones in charge.

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    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Solid Energy decision delay sensible
    Today’s announcement by the Board of Solid Energy that it will delay making a final decision on re-entering the Pike River mine is a sensible move, Labour’s MP for  West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “It has been clear for some...
    Labour | 28-10
  • New York Green Bank off to a $1B start
    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced late last week the New York Green Bank’s first NZD$1 billion tranche of green energy investments. The projects, which are difficult for the private sector to finance, are now possible by New York Green...
    Greens | 28-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Review: Perfect Place
    I went to a Perfect Place on Tuesday night, and what a delight it was. The marshmallows sweetly (and forcefully) handed out pre-show, set the tone for the next hour. Walking up the stairs at The Basement was a complete...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • False birth registration brings home detention
    A Whangarei woman who attempted to register the birth of a fictitious child to claim a sole parent benefit was sentenced to six months home detention in the Whangarei District Court today....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Family of Robert Ellis demand a proper investigation
    The family of a New Zealander killed in Indonesia are growing increasingly concerned at the lack of information they’ve received, and the handling of the investigation into his murder....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Minister of Health must account for aged care workers’ pay
    The New Zealand Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW NZ) congratulates rest-home worker Kristine Bartlett on her landmark claim for equal pay from her employer and successfully pursuing this to the Court of Appeal....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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