The dearth of long weekends this year has made me feel cheated. And now with Queen’s Birthday over it’s a long wait till Labour weekend in October. It’s not fair dammit. Kiwis deserve a bit of a break over the long winter months.
Part of rectifying our lack of holidays problem is of course ‘mondayising’ ANZAC and Waitangi. You’d be hard pressed to find anyone who doesn’t want to rectify that little problem. Even the National Party’s David Farrar agrees the costs to business would be minimal.
But it’s time now to seriously consider dealing to the cold and harsh four and half months between June and October when Kiwis work the whole miserable and rainy time, without any long weekends to compensate.
I reckon a single day off in the middle of winter would help increase workers’ productivity overall. After all, who isn’t refreshed and a bit more rearing to go after a long weekend?
And what better event to celebrate modern New Zealand than Matariki. An occasion which deserves to be celebrated as a public holiday in its own right (regardless of the fact it’s in the middle of winter). The rise of the Matariki (Pleiades) constellation together with the new (or full) moon mark the Maori new year. It’s a time to celebrate the uniqueness of Aotearoa and the special place we have here.
What a wonderful thing to celebrate with a day off. Get Kiwis out to do the things they love for one long winter weekend.
John Key may have voted Matariki down last year. But the issue isn’t going away. At the very least it’d be great to see this become official Labour and Green Party policy, and that the Maori Party make it a condition of support for the next government.
Let’s pick a time in July and celebrate Matariki with a day off.
(Different iwi may celebrate Matariki at different times, but early July would help contribute to a more ideal spread of public holidays)