web analytics

Labour Congress so far

Written By: - Date published: 11:33 am, May 14th, 2017 - 11 comments
Categories: grant robertson, jacinda ardern, labour - Tags: , ,

Speeches and policies from Congress so far.

Jacinda Ardern’s full speech is here, some extracts:

Jacinda Ardern: Labour Congress Speech

Kia ora koutuo katoa.

Nigel, Andrew, all of the Labour Family. It is my privilege to speak to you today. First and foremost as a fellow activist. And humbly, as your Deputy Leader.

I was born in Hamilton. My father was a policeman and my mother ran my school canteen. I started my schooling in Murupara before we all moved back to the Waikato, and to a small town called Morrinsville. I spent most of my younger years on a plot of land that was first an orchard, and then when my mum got sick from the sprays, was converted into a plot for sheep.

The first thing I ever drove was a large red massey Ferguson. The first thing I ever crashed was a large red massey Ferguson, straight into a nashi tree, another Nashi tree, and then into my father.

I eventually learnt to drive, to grade apples, to operate a cheery picker, and to dock lambs. Yes, I cared deeply about the world around me, and politics. But in my mind, that did not mean I would end up in politics. Especially when I had a bit of an issue with public speaking.

But perhaps a bigger hurdle than that, was the fact that no one in my peer group aspired to be a politician, or even followed politics. That part certainly hasn’t changed, and I worry that it has gotten worse.

We often talk about this phenomena. The idea that young people seem to be so put off by what we do here.

The statistics bear that out. Currently, only 65% of 18-24[1] year olds are on the electoral roll. And last election, of those young people who were enrolled, more than 126,000 didn’t show up[2]. That’s roughly the population of Hamilton, our country’s fourth largest city.

Many non-voters have reported to the Electoral Commission’s surveys that they simply can’t be bothered with politics and politicians. The number of people who feel this way in New Zealand has increased.

I don’t believe we are immune to the ructions we have seen internationally from those who have felt disempowered and disengaged with political institutions. If we are looking for what that disempowered, disengaged group looks like in New Zealand, I would argue that it is our next generation, it is our young people.

I am on the cusp of that generation. Children of the 80s and 90s have been labelled Generaton Y, and also the e- generation, given they will spend up to a third of their lives online. And while this generation may not have grown up through a depression, or a world war, social researchers have still determined them to be powerfully resilient.

Some of that might seem obvious – If you’d been subjected to a childhood of flouro Lycra and episodes of “Who’s the boss,” you’d be resilient, too! But it is much more than that.

Generation Y are the product of social breakdowns and two decades of rapid economic and global change. And what did that mean here in New Zealand? It meant that basically, they are the product of a time where WE, politics and politicians, told young people we didn’t owe them anything.

We sold their assets.

We told them their education wasn’t a public good anymore.

We traded on our environment while we polluted it for those who follow.

We stood by while home ownership amongst young people halved in a generation and is now the lowest it has been since 1951. [3]

Generation Y have been the ones to watch inequality rise, they have been the ones to watch poverty rise, and they will be the ones who’ll see it compound even further as those who have become those who inherit.

This generation may not be having the same experiences as generations past, but just because they are different, doesn’t make them indifferent.

In fact, I think this next generation are nothing short of remarkable.

In the face of crushing automation based insecurity, where multiple different careers will be the norm, and where competition is increasingly borderless, our workers of tomorrow are showing they are motivated by collaboration more than competition. They get job satisfaction out of purpose, not just wages. And they are perhaps more aware of the world and environment around them than any other generation.

Ladies and Gentlemen, party members and friends. I did not come into politics for the sport. I came to politics to make change for a generation who so richly deserves it, and who so desperately needs it.

Labour is a progressive party, a party driven by values, people and hope, we are the ones who can deliver for the next generation, and on the 23rd of September, that is exactly what we’ll do.

Thank you.share on twitter

Grant Robertson’s full speech:

Grant Robertson speech to Congress 2017


It is an honour and a privilege to stand before you at this critical point, not just in our electoral cycle, but for New Zealand.

At the election in September voters will face a choice between a government led by Andrew Little with a fresh approach to give every New Zealander a fair share in prosperity or the continuation of a tired government, out of touch and stuck in the past.

A choice between fairness and inclusion or deepening inequality and division.

When Andrew asked me to take on the Finance portfolio I was clear with him that I did not view the job as one that was just about spreadsheets and statistics, or share markets and currency movements.

Don’t get me wrong, those things matter. But they don’t matter as much as people.

It is time now for us in Labour to create a new vision for the economy. My driving ambition as the next Minister of Finance is to help create an economy with a purpose. Shared prosperity. It is time to focus on building wealth from the ground up.

And that starts with giving everyone security and opportunity. That is why the next Labour government will be relentless in getting the basics right- the building blocks of housing, education and health. In each of these areas we will take a bold and new path. Based on evidence and with a long term plan to ensure every New Zealander is secure in their knowledge that we have got their back.

These building blocks are not just important parts of our social fabric, but also make our economy work. Let’s just take Housing. Unless we have affordable, secure, warm, dry and safe housing for New Zealanders then they can not achieve their potential. Employers in Auckland are telling us that they are unable to find staff who can afford to live in the city. We also know that the low quality of our rental stock is making people sick, and spending time out of the workforce.

This is why Labour is committed to the biggest developments in housing since the first Labour government. Andrew will go into this in detail tomorrow, but secure, affordable and healthy housing is at the core our economic plans because through that we build strong and prosperous communities.

Building an economy with a purpose was also what lay behind our ground breaking Future of Work project. We must prepare ourselves now for a world of work that is changing more rapidly than ever before. I still fundamentally believe in the value of work. Not just for income but for all of the fulfilment and dignity it brings. As Minister of Finance I will re-assert Labour’s historic mission of full employment. In the first term of government we will lower unemployment to 4%.

If we boil down the big lesson of the Future of Work programme it is the central and present role of education and training as core to our current and future economic success. All the evidence suggests that the best indicator of a country’s economic success is its investment in education.

And I want to be clear. This is not a narrow view of education. Far from it. In fact what the Future of Work study told us was that more than ever we need a broad and wide-ranging education system – one that supports and encourages creativity, collaboration and problem solving. One where the humanities matter as much as science and technology.

And we are going to address the scariest number you will hear this year – the 90,000 15-24 year olds who are not in employment, education or training. Under Labour we want every young person earning or learning.

The challenge for the next Minister of Finance is to properly move our economy into the 21st century. To focus on lifting our productivity; building a Future of Work with sustainable, high paid jobs and delivering security and opportunity so every New Zealander gets to make choices about the lives for them and their families. I am up for meeting that challenge.

With your help, we will get New Zealand at its best. A fresh approach. An economy with a purpose. A fair share for all in prosperity. That is the Labour way.


Cold day but warm tone at Labour congress
Labour promises a nurse in every secondary school
‘Not only a life lost, but a community shattered’ – Jacinda Ardern’s heartfelt mental health plea
Labour tackles youth suicide, unemployment
Labour promises to knock 1 percent off unemployment
Labour to shut down ‘negative gearing’ tax break in crackdown on property investors
Labour vows to crackdown on property speculators
Labour to overhaul property investor tax loophole
Labour’s immigration debate ‘about policy, not race’
Labour’s Finance Spokesman Grant Robertson: ‘We can’t be scared to have a debate’

11 comments on “Labour Congress so far ”

  1. Draco T Bastard 1

    Jacinda’s speech is actually here.

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    I use the word disease with purpose. Suicide is a nationwide disease. We have come a long way when it comes to discussing issues of mental health and well-being, but I still fear that we treat it as something that can be overcome with will power.

    No one would tell someone with heart disease, to pull it together, sort themselves out, or focus on the positive.

    Except that people do. Mostly in the US but we follow them pretty closely.

    There should be no politics in addressing an issue like this, there should only be one thing- the value we place on new Zealanders of all walks of life having a sense of belonging, a sense of support, and a sense of hope.

    That would require that everyone have access to the resources that they need to live a whole life and that would take those away from the rich and they aren’t going to give up that power.

  3. Incognito 3

    “An economy with a purpose” or “[A]n economy for a purpose”; subtle or big difference?

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      The economy has a purpose. For most economists and politicians that purpose seems to be to make a few people rich.

      Most other people don’t seem to realise that it has a purpose at all and, IMO, that purpose is: To provide everyone within a society with a reasonable living standard that fits within the sustainable means of that country.

      This cannot be done with capitalism as it’s goal is solely to make a few people rich and powerful and that means taking from everyone else.

      • Incognito 3.1.1

        Right, so it is crucial to explicitly define the purpose rather than to leave it to each and every individual to give it a specific meaning?

        • Draco T Bastard


        • Draco T Bastard

          The important thing about specifying a purpose for the economy is that it would allow us to measure how well it’s meeting that purpose. At the moment we do not have the measure to compare it with.

          • Incognito


            National had a similarly-vague and emotionally-appealing slogan Building a Brighter Future without specifying anything: how bright and when exactly; just some deliberately-vague notions IMO.

            I’d like to add that achieving some kind of purpose for the economy per se is and cannot be a measure of how well the Government or our society for that matter is doing; it is a measure of getting the basics right, the means to an end. It does not at all give an indication of what that “end” might be like or entail; it is open-ended or Utopian IMO.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • NZ announces a third P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    The Government has deployed a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea, announced Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark. “New Zealand has long supported ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Pacific trade and development agreement a reality
    Pacific regional trade and development agreement PACER Plus will enter into force in 60 days now that the required eight countries have ratified it. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the announcement that the Cook Islands is the eighth nation to ratify this landmark agreement. “The agreement represents ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Securing a pipeline of teachers
    The Government is changing its approach to teacher recruitment as COVID-19 travel restrictions continue, by boosting a range of initiatives to get more Kiwis into teaching. “When we came into Government, we were faced with a teacher supply crisis,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “Over the past three years, we ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Border exceptions for a small number of international students with visas
    The Government has established a new category that will allow 250 international PhD and postgraduate students to enter New Zealand and continue their studies, in the latest set of border exceptions. “The health, safety and wellbeing of people in New Zealand remains the Government’s top priority. Tight border restrictions remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • First COVID-19 vaccine purchase agreement signed
    The Government has signed an agreement to purchase 1.5 million COVID-19 vaccines – enough for 750,000 people – from Pfizer and BioNTech, subject to the vaccine successfully completing all clinical trials and passing regulatory approvals in New Zealand, say Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods and Health Minister Chris Hipkins. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • International statement – End-to-end encryption and public safety
    We, the undersigned, support strong encryption, which plays a crucial role in protecting personal data, privacy, intellectual property, trade secrets and cyber security.  It also serves a vital purpose in repressive states to protect journalists, human rights defenders and other vulnerable people, as stated in the 2017 resolution of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Ministry of Defence Biodefence Assessment released
    The Ministry of Defence has today released a Defence Assessment examining Defence’s role across the spectrum of biological hazards and threats facing New Zealand. Biodefence: Preparing for a New Era of Biological Hazards and Threats looks at how the NZDF supports other agencies’ biodefence activities, and considers the context of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020
    New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020 Hon David Parker’s response following Thomas Piketty and Esther Duflo. Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening, wherever in the world you might be. I first acknowledge the excellent thought provoking speeches of Thomas Piketty and Esther ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Kaipara Moana restoration takes next step
    A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed today at Waihāua Marae between the Crown, local iwi and councils to protect, restore and enhance the mauri of Kaipara Moana in Northland. Environment Minister David Parker signed the document on behalf of the Crown along with representatives from Ngā Maunga Whakahī, Ngāti ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand and Uruguay unite on reducing livestock production emissions
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Uruguayan Minister of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries Carlos María Uriarte have welcomed the launch of a three-year project that will underpin sustainable livestock production in Uruguay, Argentina, and Costa Rica.  The project called ‘Innovation for pasture management’ is led by Uruguay’s National Institute of Agricultural ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 3100 jobs created through marae upgrades
    Hundreds of marae throughout the country will be upgraded through investments from the Provincial Growth Fund’s refocused post COVID-19 funding to create jobs and put money into the pockets of local tradespeople and businesses, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta have announced. “A total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Health volunteers recognised in annual awards
    Health Minister Chris Hipkins has announced 9 teams and 14 individuals are the recipients of this year’s Minister of Health Volunteer Awards.  “The health volunteer awards celebrate and recognise the thousands of dedicated health sector volunteers who give many hours of their time to help other New Zealanders,” Mr Hipkins ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community COVID-19 Fund supports Pacific recovery
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio says a total of 264 groups and individuals have successfully applied for the Pacific Aotearoa Community COVID-19 Recovery Fund, that will support Pacific communities drive their own COVID-19 recovery strategies, initiatives, and actions. “I am keen to see this Fund support Pacific ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community benefits from Māori apprenticeships
    Up to 50 Māori apprentices in Wellington will receive paid training to build houses for their local communities, thanks to a $2.75 million investment from the Māori Trades and Training Fund, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Ngāti Toa Rangatira Incorporated to provide its Ngā Kaimahi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Training fund supports Māori jobseekers
    Rapidly growing sectors will benefit from a $990,000 Māori Trades and Training Fund investment which will see Wellington jobseekers supported into work, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Sapphire Consultants Ltd. to help up to 45 Māori jobseekers into paid training initiatives over two years through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ruakura Inland Port development vital infrastructure for Waikato
    The Government is investing $40 million to develop an inland port at Ruakura which will become a freight super-hub and a future business, research and residential development for the Waikato, Urban Development and Transport Minister Phil Twyford, and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today. The funding has been has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Appointments made to Defence Expert Review Group
    Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today the establishment of an Expert Review Group to review a number of aspects of the New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) structure, information management and record-keeping processes.  The Expert Review Group’s work arises out of the first recommendation from the Report of the Government’s Inquiry ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • No active community cases of COVID-19
    There are no active community cases of COVID-19 remaining in the country after the last people from the recent outbreak have recovered from the virus, Health Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “This is a big milestone. New Zealanders have once again through their collective actions squashed the virus. The systems ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clean energy upgrade for more public buildings
    More public buildings will be supported by the Government to upgrade to run on clean energy, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. Minister Shaw announced that Lincoln and Auckland universities will receive support through the Clean-Powered Public Service Fund to replace fossil fuel boilers. Southern, Taranaki, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Schools back donations scheme for the second year
    More schools have opted in to the donations scheme for 2021, compared to 2020 when the scheme was introduced. “The families of more than 447,000 students will be better off next year, with 94% of eligible schools and kura opting into the scheme,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ruapehu cycle trails gets PGF boost
    The spectacular Mountains to Sea cycle trail in Ruapehu District will receive $4.6 million in funding from the Provincial Growth Fund for two additional trails, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This is an exciting development for the local community, and one that will provide significant economic opportunities ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Update to air border order strengthens crew requirements
    Additional measures coming into effect on Monday will boost our defence against COVID-19 entering New Zealand through the air border, Health Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “As part of our precautionary approach and strategy of constant review, we’re tightening the requirements around international aircrew,” Chris Hipkins said. The COVID-19 Public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • A true picture of Māori business activity
    A better picture of the contribution Māori businesses make to the economy will be possible with changes to the way information is collected about companies and trading enterprises. Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta and Small Business Minister Stuart Nash have announced a new option for Māori enterprises who are part ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF funding for Taranaki projects
    The South Taranaki museum, a New Plymouth distillery and a Pasifika building firm will benefit from a Government investment totalling more than $1 million, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. The $1.05m in grants and loans from the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will help the recipients expand and create ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Fijian Language Week 2020 inspires courage and strength during COVID-19 pandemic
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio says the theme for the 2020 Fijian Language Week reflects the strong belief by Fijians that their language and culture inspires courage and strength that is strongly needed in times of emergencies, or through a significant challenge like the global COVID-19 pandemic ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Trades training builds on iwi aspirations
    An investment of $2.025 million from the Māori Trades and Training Fund will support Māori to learn new skills while making a positive difference for their communities, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “K3 Development Limited Partnership will receive $2,025,000 for its Takitimu Tuanui apprenticeship programme, which will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Conservation Minister plants two millionth tree in Raglan restoration
    A long-term conservation project led by the Whaingaroa Harbour Care group in the western Waikato reaches a significant milestone this week, with the planting of the two millionth tree by the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage. “Planting the two millionth tree crowns 25 years of commitment and partnership involving Whaingaroa ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Seniors – our parents and grandparents
    International Older Persons Day is a chance to think about the individual older New Zealanders we know and to confront ageism, Seniors Minister Tracey Martin said today. “What happened around COVID-19 is a reminder that our over-65s are a very large and diverse group of people and we need to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago