web analytics

Labour stands up for ACC

Written By: - Date published: 7:02 am, October 24th, 2009 - 14 comments
Categories: ACC, national/act government, phil goff, privatisation - Tags:

acc-aint-broke-200So – Labour have stood up for ACC. Bravo!

History repeats. In the last year of the last National government (1999) they flogged off the profitable parts of ACC cover to their mates in the insurance industry (“opened ACC to competition”). The incoming Labour government reversed those changes and re-instated ACC as the sole provider of accident insurance cover. ACC is an excellent system, the “envy of the world”, it ain’t broke, and it doesn’t need fixing. It certainly doesn’t need selling. National are determined to flog it off anyway, and last week announced Phase 1, again “opening” ACC to “competition”.

Some doubted that Labour had the mettle to fight for ACC, to stand up and say that they would reverse these changes again next time they are in government. Well, Phil Goff showed us that Labour still has what it takes. Labour will fight tooth and nail, and reverse any changes. On Friday’s Morning Report Phil set it out (audio):

Very clearly, this is a stalking horse for the full privatisation of ACC. It’s served New Zealand well, it’s been a better system than any other system in the world. But the National Party has never supported it.

They’ve been looking for an excuse to turn it over to mates in the business sector, they’ve found [made up!] that excuse. Labour is opposed to privatisation, we will fight that tooth and nail, and we will reverse it.

The interview goes on to quote insurance industry figures expressing doubts on whether it is worth getting in to the business on those terms.  The (hopefully short!) timeframe doesn’t justify the start up costs. So what next?  In the mean time, bravo Labour, and well spoken Phil Goff!

[The excellent Marty G has been covering ACC so well I hesitated to write this post.  But Marty seems to be away so be away and this development needed a post, so hope you don’t mind!]

14 comments on “Labour stands up for ACC ”

  1. Ed 1

    By ‘profitable’ I assume it is thought that this account will deliver the most profit to private companies. It is my understanding that no part of ACC currently makes any ‘profit’ – there are no shareholders that take any part of levies, or any surplus arising if levies are higher than claims in any period.

    I heard a radio commentator saying that the worker account was the only profitable account and that without it the other accounts would need more money from government – that doesn’t seem right to me – over time, each account pays for itself.

    Where introducing competition will hurt New Zealand is that we will divert resources to pay for:
    *The cost of introducing systems and processes into a number of different companies.
    *The cost of all sales costs and marketing costs needed with competition that are no otherwise needed
    *The cost of health professionals having to deal with multiple providers all with different forms and requirements
    *The cost of changing banking and payroll systems to cope with multiple providers
    *The cost of companies needing to each develop reserves for future claims – with smaller companies needing proportionately higher reserves than larger organisations
    *And also the cost of unwinding the system when Labour is next in government
    with all those costs being met by levies, and with no higher benefits,

    There are good reasons for saying that keeping ACC unchanged is better for employers and workers and the country, but implying that there is currently profit being made in the worker account is not one of them.

    Didn’t Key promise not to sell off state assets in this term? Selling part of the ACC market is selling a state asset in my view, even if the government ends up paying rather than being paid for the sale.

    • BLiP 1.1

      Exactly!

      You highlight the idiocy so apparent in the introduction of “competition” into government functions. Millions and millions are being spent on pretty pamphlets, advertisements and legions of marketing and brand specialists now infesting universities in the competitive education “market” – thanks Labour – instead of text books, teachers and research. This same waste will become a feature of ACC as pretty pamphlets, advertising and associated leeches flood into that sector and detract resources from prevention, cure and rehabilitation.

      And, yes, The Goober did promise not to privatise government – that’s why the indolent media and the scurrying blog bugs are attempting to spin this not as privatisation but as competition.

  2. RedLogix 2

    But Goff has been vague about the exact terms on which ACC would be restored as the sole provider.

    Interesting questions arise in terms of what happens to those people who have paid out a number of years of premiums to an Aussie company and then have a long-term accident.. at which point that company closes up shop because ACC is restored.

    Would ACC then be liable for the on-going costs associated with that injury? Would ACC be able to reach back and re-claim the premiums from the company they were paid to?

    Premiums are paid today, but the liablibity extends into the future… Goff needs to make it clear to any private company entering this market, that if and when ACC is fully restored, that ACC will attempt to recover the premiums paid to that company in order to cover the pre-exisiting liabilities that ACC would be inhereting.

    • gitmo 2.1

      “if and when ACC is fully restored, that ACC will attempt to recover the premiums paid to that company in order to cover the pre-exisiting liabilities that ACC would be inhereting.”

      What all the premiums, or just those that relate to the those persons with liabilities ?

      • RedLogix 2.1.1

        Premiums (or levies) are paid into a collective pool annually to cover accidents that may or may not occur any time in the future.

        If a restored ACC is required to unconditionally assume these future liabilities, then it needs to recover the ‘hole’ in the levy income that would be created by a period of privatisation… would it not?

        Logically a future ACC needs to go back to the private insureres and say… we are now covering the risk you accepted premiums for and we want to recover it. (Less of course any payouts the private companies may have made in the meantime.)

        This illustrates a major difference between ACC and a private insurer. Private companies are essentially taking a bet with you, a bet that you will not have an accident during the period your premium covers, usually just one year. If you don’t pay your premium, the bet expires.

        By contrast ACC is a social contract that covers all citizens unconditionally without time limit. ACC is not ‘public insurance company’, and the whole artifice of ‘workplace’ and ‘motor vehicle’ accounts exist solely for accounting purposes, and have nothing to do with it’s underlying purpose or principles.

        • gitmo 2.1.1.1

          I see complete fantasy land stuff.

          • RedLogix 2.1.1.1.1

            Of course in reality what will happen is that a future ACC would simply have to recover the lost levy income from the taxpayer (either by direct injection or increased levies)… and the private Aussie insurers will make out like dingos. It’s called privatising the profits and socialising the losses, and it’s how so called ‘private enterprise’ makes it’s real money all the time.

            I was just fantasising a scenario in which that didn’t happen for once.

    • Ed 2.2

      I can”t remember how it was done last time, but in a competitive model there must be a way of agreeing who is responsible for which claims. The private companies would probably be responsible for claims arising from the period they provided cover (including all future payments under those claims.

      Some very large companies already effectively self-insure (there are some criteria they have to meet to be allowed to do it), and if payments last more than a few years ACC takes over the ongoing liability for a premium. I think the company only pays up to 2 or 3 years. There was a legal battle a few years ago about a company which had not realised how expensive a long term claim could be.

      (Incidentally, this is the reason all employers are not allowed to self-insure – you would not want a claim to bankrupt a business (or more likely to find that an employer goes into liquidation to avoid paying a claim). I’ve never understood why large companies are allowed to do it actually having a subsidiary insurance company.

      So there is no real need for Phil Goff to set out how it would happen. The insurance companies know that it would be fair as regards the company paying enough money for ACC to take over the liabilities – but if they spend a lot of money setting up systems and sales structures, that is their risk.

  3. dave 3

    Labour has NEVER stood up for ACC. If you think Labour has done so, you obviously dont know much about ACC, have never tried to get home help or other rehabilitation and have never had a vocational rehabilitation assessment.

    • Craig Glen Eden 3.1

      Gee Dave you not being able to get the service you need = Labour not standing up for Acc.
      No logic their buddy in short you are talking CRAP

      I know hundreds of cases where Labour MPs have gone into bat for people to insure the get what they need from ACC, unions as well for that matter. Labour has already reversed the privatization of ACC once and have said they will do it again.

      I am not sure where you live but Labour will be down the Avondale Market in Auckland talking to people about ACC and campaigning to stop the cuts to ACC. So Dave if you live in Auckland put your brain in gear put your money where your mouth is and come and campaign for ACC.

  4. JM 4

    Seems to me that by their action to open up ACC, National have locked in place a significant proportion of their support funding for the next election.

  5. felix 5

    Good one, Labour. This is the direction you need to be moving in.

    You need to say this louder and more clearly, but it’s a good start.

    Moar like this plox.

  6. swimmer 6

    Yus, Labour! Yay Goff! 😀

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • New Zealand boosts support to Fiji for COVID-19 impact
    Aotearoa New Zealand is providing additional support to Fiji to mitigate the effects of the current COVID-19 outbreak on vulnerable households, Foreign Minister Hon Nanaia Mahuta announced today. “Recognising the increasingly challenging situation in Fiji, Aotearoa will provide an additional package of assistance to support the Government of Fiji and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    60 mins ago
  • Round 2 of successful energy education fund now open
    $1.65 million available in Support for Energy Education in Communities funding round two Insights from SEEC to inform future energy hardship programmes Community organisations that can deliver energy education to households in need are being invited to apply for the second funding round of the Support for Energy Education in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 hour ago
  • New Ngarimu scholarships to target vocational training
    Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis today announced three new scholarships for students in vocational education and training (VET) are to be added to the suite of prestigious Ngarimu scholarships. “VET learners have less access to study support than university students and this is a way to tautoko their learning dreams ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Recognising the volunteers who support our health system
    Nominations have opened today for the 2021 Minister of Health Volunteer Awards, as part of National Volunteer Week. “We know that New Zealanders donate at least 159 million hours of volunteer labour every year,” Minister of Health Andrew Little said in launching this year’s awards in Wellington. “These people play ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Drug Free Sport supported to deal with new doping challenges
    Drug Free Sport New Zealand will receive a funding boost to respond to some of the emerging doping challenges across international sport. The additional $4.3 million over three years comes from the Sport Recovery Fund announced last year. It will help DFSNZ improve athletes’ understanding of the risks of doping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Government support for South Auckland community hit by tornado
    The Government is contributing $100,000 to a Mayoral Relief Fund to support Auckland communities impacted by the Papatoetoe tornado, Acting Minister for Emergency Management Kris Faafoi says. “My heart goes out to the family and friends who have lost a loved one, and to those who have been injured. I ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Celebrating World Refugee Day
    World Refugee Day today is an opportunity to celebrate the proud record New Zealanders have supporting and protecting refugees and acknowledge the contribution these new New Zealanders make to our country, the Minister of Immigration Kris Faafoi said. “World Refugee Day is also a chance to think about the journey ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Face to face meeting delivers significant progress on NZ-UK FTA
    New Zealand and the UK have committed to accelerating their free trade agreement negotiations with the aim of reaching an agreement in principle this August, Trade Minister Damien O’Connor announced. “We’ve held constructive and productive discussions towards the conclusion of a high-quality and comprehensive FTA that will support sustainable and inclusive trade, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government taking action to protect albatross
    New population figures for the critically endangered Antipodean albatross showing a 5 percent decline per year highlights the importance of reducing all threats to these very special birds, Acting Minister of Conservation Dr Ayesha Verrall says. The latest population modelling, carried out by Dragonfly Data Science, shows the Antipodean albatross ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Adoption laws under review
    New Zealand’s 66-year-old adoption laws are being reviewed, with public engagement beginning today.  Justice Minister Kris Faafoi said the Government is seeking views on options for change to our adoption laws and system. “The Adoption Act has remained largely the same since 1955. We need our adoption laws to reflect ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Wider roll-out of cameras on boats to support sustainability and protect marine life
    Up to 300 inshore commercial fishing vessels will be fitted with on-board cameras by 2024 as part of the Government’s commitment to protect the natural marine environment for future generations.  Minister for Oceans and Fisheries David Parker today announced the funding is now in place for the wider roll out ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Plan for vaccine rollout for general population announced
    New Zealanders over 60 will be offered a vaccination from July 28 and those over 55 from August 11, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The rollout of the vaccine to the general population will be done in age groups as is the approach commonly used overseas, with those over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand introduces Belarus travel bans
    New Zealand has imposed travel bans on selected individuals associated with the Lukashenko regime, following ongoing concerns about election fraud and human rights abuses after the 2020 Belarus elections, Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta has announced. The ban covers more than fifty individuals, including the President and key members of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ economy grows driven by households, construction and business investment
    The Government’s efforts to secure the recovery have been reflected in the robust rebound of GDP figures released today which show the economy remains resilient despite the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Grant Robertson said. GDP increased 1.6 percent in the first three months of 2021. The Treasury had ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Milestone 250th tower continues to improve rural connectivity
    The Government has welcomed the completion of the 250th 4G mobile tower, as part of its push for better rural connectivity. Waikato’s Wiltsdown, which is roughly 80 kilometres south of Hamilton, is home to the new tower, deployed by the Rural Connectivity Group to enable improved service to 70 homes ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Quarantine Free Travel pause with Victoria to lift on Tuesday
    Following a further public health assessment of the COVID-19 outbreak in greater Melbourne, New Zealand’s Quarantine Free Travel pause with Victoria has been extended to 11.59pm on Tuesday 22 June, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says. It has been determined that the risk to public health in New Zealand continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister mourns passing of Dr Sir Ian Hassall
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is mourning the passing of Dr Sir Ian Hassall, New Zealand’s first Children’s Commissioner and lifelong champion for children and children’s health. As a paediatrician Sir Ian contributed to a major world-first cot death study that has been directly credited with reducing cot deaths in New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • APEC structural reform meeting a success
    APEC ministers have agreed working together will be crucial to ensure economies recover from the impact of COVID-19. Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs David Clark, chaired the virtual APEC Structural Reform Ministerial Meeting today which revolved around the overarching theme of promoting balanced, inclusive, sustainable, innovative and secure growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Digital hub to boost investment in forestry
    A new website has been launched at Fieldays to support the forestry sector find the information it needs to plant, grow and manage trees, and to encourage investment across the wider industry. Forestry Minister Stuart Nash says the new Canopy website is tailored for farmers, iwi and other forestry interests, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government continues support for rangatahi to get into employment, education and training
    Over 230 rangatahi are set to benefit from further funding through four new He Poutama Rangatahi programmes, Minister for Social Development and Employment Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “We’re continuing to secure our economic recovery from COVID by investing in opportunities for rangatahi to get into meaningful employment, education or training ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NCEA subjects up for consultation
    The education sector, students, their parents, whānau and communities are invited to share their thoughts on a list of proposed NCEA subjects released today, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says. This is a significant part of the Government’s NCEA Change Programme that commenced in 2020 and will be largely implemented by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Major investment in plantain forage programme aims to improve freshwater quality
    The Government is backing a major programme investigating plantain’s potential to help farmers protect waterways and improve freshwater quality, Acting Agriculture Minister Meka Whaitiri announced at Fieldays today. The Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures (SFFF) fund is contributing $8.98 million to the $22.23 million seven-year programme, which aims to deliver ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • America’s Cup decision
    The Minister responsible for the America’s Cup has confirmed the joint Crown-Auckland Council offer to host the next regatta has been declined by the Board of Team New Zealand. “The exclusive period of negotiation between the Crown, Auckland Council, and Team New Zealand ends tomorrow, 17 June,” said Stuart Nash. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Food and fibres sector making significant strides towards New Zealand’s economic recovery
    The Government is backing the food and fibres sector to lead New Zealand's economic recovery from COVID-19 with targeted investments as part of its Fit for a Better World roadmap, Forestry Minister Stuart Nash said. “To drive New Zealand’s recovery, we launched the Fit for a Better World – Accelerating ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Speech to He Whenua Taurikura – New Zealand’s annual hui on countering terrorism and violent...
    Check against delivery Can I begin by acknowledging the 51 shuhada, their families and the Muslim community. It is because of the atrocious violent act that was done to them which has led ultimately to this, the start of a dialogue and a conversation about how we as a nation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Cost of Government Southern Response proactive package released
    The Government has announced the proactive package for some Southern Response policyholders could cost $313 million if all those eligible apply. In December, the Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission, David Clark announced a proactive package for SRES claimants who settled their claims before October 2014. It trailed the judgment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • First period products delivered to schools
    The first period products funded as part of the Government’s nationwide rollout are being delivered to schools and kura this week, as part of wider efforts to combat child poverty, help increase school attendance, and make a positive impact on children’s wellbeing. “We know that nearly 95,000 9-to-18 year olds ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New support to reduce emissions from public building and construction projects
    Government agencies are getting new support to reduce carbon emissions generated by construction of new buildings, with the release of practical guidance to shape decisions on public projects. The Ministers for Building and Construction and for Economic Development say a new Procurement Guide will help government agencies, private sector suppliers, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • He Whenua Taurikura: New Zealand’s first Hui on Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism
    The Prime Minister has opened New Zealand’s first hui on Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism, which is being held in Christchurch over the next two days. The hui delivers on one of the recommendations from the report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the terrorist attack on Christchurch masjidain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Speech to inaugural Countering Terrorism Hui
    E aku nui, e aku rahi, Te whaka-kanohi mai o rātou mā, Ru-ruku-tia i runga i te ngākau whakapono, Ru-ruku-tia i runga i te ngākau aroha, Waitaha, Ngāti Mamoe, Ngai Tahu, nāu rā te reo pohiri. Tena tātou katoa. Ki te kotahi te kakaho ka whati, ki te kapuia, e ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Campaign shines a light on elder abuse
    A new campaign is shining a spotlight on elder abuse, and urging people to protect older New Zealanders. Launched on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, the Office for Seniors’ campaign encourages friends, whānau and neighbours to look for the signs of abuse, which is often hidden in plain sight. “Research suggests ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Farewelling sports administrator and philanthropist Sir Eion Edgar
    Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson today expressed his sorrow at the passing of Sir Eion Edgar – a leading sports administrator and celebrated philanthropist who has made a significant impact both within and beyond the sport sector. “Sir Eion’s energy, drive and generosity has been truly immense. He leaves ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Government to apologise for Dawn Raids
    The Government will make a formal apology for the wrongs committed during the Dawn Raids of the 1970’s. Between 1974 and 1976, a series of rigorous immigration enforcement policies were carried out that resulted in targeted raids on the homes of Pacific families. The raids to find, convict and deport overstayers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Humanitarian support for Bangladesh and Myanmar
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced that New Zealand is providing NZ $8.25 million in humanitarian assistance to support refugees and their host populations in Bangladesh and to support humanitarian need of internally displaced and conflict affected people in Myanmar.  “Nearly four years after 900,000 Rohingya crossed the border ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Poroporoaki: Dame Georgina Kamiria Kirby
    E Te Kōkō Tangiwai, Te Tuhi Mareikura, Te Kākākura Pokai kua riro i a matou. He toka tū moana ākinga ā tai, ākinga ā hau, ākinga ā ngaru tūātea.  Haere atu rā ki te mūrau a te tini, ki te wenerau a te mano.  E tae koe ki ngā rire ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Feedback sought on future of housing and urban development
    New Zealanders are encouraged to have their say on a long-term vision for housing and urban development to guide future work, the Housing Minister Megan Woods has announced. Consultation starts today on a Government Policy Statement on Housing and Urban Development (GPS-HUD), which will support the long-term direction of Aotearoa ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Clean car package to drive down emissions
    New rebates for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles start July 1 with up to $8,625 for new vehicles and $3,450 for used. Electric vehicle chargers now available every 75km along most state highways to give Kiwis confidence. Low Emission Transport Fund will have nearly four times the funding by 2023 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Progress towards simpler process for changing sex on birth certificates
    The Government is taking the next step to support transgender, non-binary and intersex New Zealanders, by progressing the Births, Deaths, Marriages and Relationships Registration Bill, Minister of Internal Affairs, Jan Tinetti announced today. “This Government understands that self-identification is a significant issue for transgender, non-binary and intersex New Zealanders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Crown speeds up engagement with takutai moana applicants
    The Crown is taking a new approach to takutai moana applications to give all applicants an opportunity to engage with the Crown and better support the Māori-Crown relationship, Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Andrew Little says. Following discussions with applicant groups, the Crown has reviewed the existing takutai moana application ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment (AODT) Court opens
    The Minister of Justice, Kris Faafoi, and the Minister for Courts, Aupito William Sio, have welcomed the opening of a new Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment (AODT) Court in Hamilton. The AODT Court (Te Whare Whakapiki Wairua) addresses situations where substance abuse and offending are intertwined. “New Zealanders have told ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago