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Nats and reproductive rights

Written By: - Date published: 6:58 am, September 28th, 2015 - 208 comments
Categories: babies, human rights, john key, national - Tags: , ,

In the news this weekend:

State may try to stop some families having more children

Some families who have come to the attention of authorities may be stopped from having more children by the Government.

Tolley acknowledged it would be a “huge step” for the state to start telling people that they could not have another child, but said it was “a conversation that New Zealanders, perhaps, need to have”.

Tolley did not rule out limiting or preventing some families from having another child, but said she would wait to see what the panel recommended in December. …

We’ve been here before. 2012:

Government mulling ways to stop ‘unfit’ parents reproducing

The Government is considering a range of hard-line measures to try and stop ‘unfit’ parents from having more children.

And 2011:

Bennett: No compulsory contraception for now

Social Development Minister Paula Bennett is “a big fan” of long acting contraception for solo mums but says her Government is “not quite” at the stage of making it compulsory.

Are we still “not quite” at the stage of compulsion, or are the Nats going to cross that line? It’s obvious from their record that they have a thoroughly unhealthy obsession with the idea. John Key “thinks” (despite all the evidence to the contrary) that parents on the DPB are “breeding for a business”. That kind of sick and stupid attitude can never be allowed to control reproductive rights.

208 comments on “Nats and reproductive rights”

  1. Tiger Mountain 1

    it is the leafy suburbs lot who are breeding excessively in my view–given the disproportional sway that minority has over the rest of society–lets try a ‘one child’ type policy for Remuera and Epsom and see how they like it

    this is really hateful stuff from the Nats that the ‘dark kiwis’ among us will no doubt buy into even if it never becomes a full reality, it is for the New Zealanders that indulge in the country’s second favourite pastime–Beneficiary Bashing; this serving of raw meat includes memes such as–“don’t have children if you can’t afford to raise them” etc., of course some of this criticism will come from people in receipt of WFF in work tax credits!

    this is super nanny statism with a side of nasty NZ Nat style totalitarian fantasy, though I don’t underestimate what they are trying to do as evidenced by WINZ which has made it so difficult and unpleasant to access entitlements that numbers receiving “job seeker support” are falling while unemployment is rising

  2. RedBaronCV 2

    Usual sickko stuff from the NActs.

    Basically Tolley is discussing a very very few families – go on journo’s ask just how many they are? and then spreading that out into “we need to control all of what..?”
    Solo mothers, Low income families somthing else?

    Notice how it is always couched in terms of controlling “her” reproductive capacity very sexist (don’t see them sending letters to the boys demanding condom use , vasectomies after they have abandoned their children to the welfare).

    and also very income related. As if people set out to be solo parents while the state colludes with non caring parent to ensure no money is paid over.

    I’ll believe them when they start demanding that convicted white collar crims & tax evaders (who cost society heaps) have their reproductive rights taken away from them.

    If they were serious they would offer free contraception for both sexes across the board

  3. Rosemary McDonald 3

    “”I mean, I know of cases that CYF have taken the sixth and seventh baby from.”

    Anne Tolley from above link.

    I once fostered a newborn who was the seventh child taken from the same parents…is Tolley referring to the same case? Or are there more than one?

    Think about that for a minute.

    If that were your sister repeatedly getting pregnant, giving birth and then having the baby taken by authorities because of harm or strong risk of harm…the grief that goes with that scenario…what would you be advising?

    The national shame that is child abuse and neglect in New Zealand needs totally multi party solutions.

    And yes, Red BaronCV…free contraception for all…but are you going to make sure it is used?

    I’m looking forward to reading comments about this issue.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1

      Geez, I dunno, how about addressing the actual causes of poverty and inequality as opposed to vile hate-speech against the victims?

      Anyone who proposes or supports this fascism belongs in prison.

      • Rosemary McDonald 3.1.1


        305,000 children living in poverty, and,


        “As at 31 March 2015, compared to 31 March 2014, there were more:
        children or young people in the custody of the Chief Executive (5,133 compared to 5,075, a 1 per cent increase)
        children or young people in care and protection out of home placements (4,119 compared to 4,043, a 2 per cent increase).
        …and there were fewer:”

        So, if poverty is the entire cause of family dysfunction to the point of children being removed from the parents….how come there are not 305,000 children in the direct care of cyfs?

        Please…this is too important an issue for merely repeating all the usual ideological cliches.

        I said in my original comment….think for a minute.

        What is wrong with a woman being strongly advised to stop having any more children until she is in a position to take proper care and responsibility to the ones she already has?

        Or is it somehow OK for these women to be repeatedly giving birth and having the baby taken from them…?

        How many women commenting here would find that acceptable for themselves…or their sisters?

        I for one would have no problems with sitting such a one down and having a serious talk about birth control….about her exercising the power she has to control her fertility. I’d tell her in no uncertain terms that having two children and caring for them properly is infinitely better than having seven being taken into care.

        And yes Scotty…I am making ‘coal face’ comments…. “good on you for mucking in and getting your hands dirty”… .over 60 foster children have been in my care.

        All of them needed to be placed in a safer home.

        And yes, CYFs does have a ‘dump and run’ culture….which is why we quit after eight years of fostering….and a complaint about cyfs to the Children’s Commission.

        So TS pundits….are you going to keep up the usual ideologically constipated claptrap or are you willing to see this whole issue for what it is?

        A national tragedy and embarrassment.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          If you think addressing the causes of poverty is ideological claptrap, and you’re capable of constructing an entirely false narrative (“how come there are not 305,000 children in the direct care of cyfs?” – seriously: you’re so “committed” to doing something your first refuge is witless gibberish – pfft.) , you’re making it worse.

          Get down off your moral high horse: refusing to address the causes of tragedy is a coward’s way out.

        • tracey

          “What is wrong with a woman being strongly advised to stop having any more children until she is in a position to take proper care and responsibility to the ones she already has?”

          Nothing. Removing her ability to care for her existing children, and MAKING he have an IUD medically inserted might be wrong.

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            What is wrong with a woman being strongly advised to stop having any more children until she is in a position to take proper care and responsibility to the ones she already has?

            For one thing, it’s ideological bullshit.

            …families with the most children in state care would be “least likely” to receive contraceptive advice….The level of resistance and disengagement would tell me it would be almost impossible.

            Aotearoa NZ Association of Social Workers chief executive Lucy Stanford-Reed.

        • Draco T Bastard

          … .over 60 foster children have been in my care.

          ….which is why we quit after eight years of fostering….

          So, that would be eight children per year that you were fostering?

          I’d say that you were part of the problem for those children.

          • Rosemary McDonald

            Really Draco T Bastard…have I got that right? The ‘bastard’ bit?

            Not that I should have to explain…but then again, knowledge is power and all that…

            We signed up for emergency, short term and respite care only as our own particular circumstances did not permit us to commit to longer than that.

            We had three school age children of our own at the time as well as my partner being severely physically disabled.

            Our theory…and we can be forgiven for being a bit naive…was that the 28 day Care and Protection order (under which most of our kids came to us) was ample time for a) the parent to realise that the shit had hit the fan and they needed to get it together to get their kids back, b) cyfs social workers to get their shit together and assist the parents to get their’s together and in the absence of a and or b..c) was time for the social workers to find a suitable long term placement for the child/ren.

            We extended the 28 day limit on more than one occasion in the hope that a/b or c would happen.

            We advocated strongly on behalf of our foster children….all the way to the child’s lawyer and the children’s commission.

            Cyfs treat foster parents like dirt…our mantra became ‘bed and board’, as this was all the social workers thought we provided.

            We had no skills, we had no experience, we had no right to opine as to what we thought a particular child might need in the way of extra help after having them live a part of our family for months.

            You have no idea of the trauma some of our foster children had endured before coming into our care.

            You have no idea of the trauma our own kids experienced when some of their foster siblings displayed the effects of their trauma.

            Draco T Bastard…I am part of the problem, eh?

            I could write much, much, more…but I’m sure you are aware of the “Lashlie Effect”.

            • Draco T Bastard

              I am part of the problem, eh?

              Sorry about that. I shouldn’t have been so judgemental.

              I was taken by the short term implied and how damaging that itself would be to the children. They’ll get a feeling of instability likely resulting in trust issues and other psychological damage exacerbating the damage from their broken home.

              And, no, I’d not expect parents who are so fucked up that CYFs are taking their children away to pull themselves together in 28 days

              But all of that’s actually CYFs getting it wrong.

              but I’m sure you are aware of the “Lashlie Effect”.

              Nope, never heard of it and neither has Google or Wikipedia.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                She probably means Celia Lashlie, who doesn’t have an effect named after her. She was good at agreeing with Leighton Smith, though.

              • Rosemary McDonald

                “Lashlie Effect”.


                “The primary teachers’ union is supporting a top level investigation into the sacking of a senior manager in Special Education Services.

                Nelson’s former Special Education Services manager Celia Lashlie was fired after giving a speech and media interview about the likelihood of a five-year-old at-risk child going on to become a killer.”

                Lashlie gave a speech where she referred to a generic at risk child, fired for’identifying’ a specific child.

                Ironically….Nick Smith championed her right to free speech in the House…http://www.vdig.net/hansard/archive.jsp?y=2001&m=05&d=02&o=28&p=39

                “I want to talk about the serious issue of the plight of Celia Lashlie. A fortnight ago today, Celia Lashlie spoke to a justice meeting here in Wellington. She spoke of the sorts of issues this House should be debating. She talked of a 5-year-old child who, she says, is on the road to prison and is likely to kill someone along the way; a 5-year-old child whose mother has three other children to three different fathers; a child who, at 18 months, is likely to have been put to sleep by having cannabis smoke blown in his nose; a child in a desperate state. She spoke about the frustration she has, as manager of Nelson’s Specialist Education Services, at not being able to get the resources to deal with that sort of child.”

                And nothing changes.

        • Sabine

          What is wrong is making Women the sole responsible person for children.

          Despite what everyone may believe the 305,000 children living in poverty were not delivered by the stork nor do they grew under cabbage leaves of some women living of a benefits somewhere.

          They are made by two adults fucking without appropriate protection against pregnancy, some of these children were conceived when the parents might have had money, might have been still living together, might still have been married, or might have been still alive. Single mothers and fathers include divorced parents, widowed parents, seperated parents etc etc. Might we want to take this into account just for a moment.

          So why not advocate free vasectomies for all boys/men from age 16 – when ever they can prove that they have enough to support their children? After all it is reversible, does not incur monthly costs for over 25 – 35 years and the taking of hormons that may have various side effects, and you know, is easy to manage.

          Why shame and blame only the women for the children on the benefit?

          Oh, its because they are the ones pregnant and doing the pushing/birthing, and thus can’t hide the fact that a child was made? While a bloke might just walk away and say surely its not mine? ?

          So we are happy to go back to the middle ages? shaming did not stop teh wimminz from having teh sex outside of marriage? cutting /removing the Domestic Purpose Benefit (which does not exist anymore) did not stop teh women peoplez from having teh sex every now and then? Damn you, lets force you to take this pill, or this metal thing, or this patch or this and this and that on you so you can’t reproduce.

          Ok, so lets discuss forcing/enticing/coercing women on ‘a’ benefit (maybe a housing allowance will be enough? Or maybe an emergency benefit? Or maybe even an unemployment benefit? ) to have invasive / longterm birthcontroll that may or may not affect their future ability to become pregnant, once they prove that they earn enough to support their children on their own, as we all know, men are not responsible for making children?

          IF we want this discussion, we should include the Sperm carrier as much as the Egg carrier, as alone by themselves no babies are made . It takes two to tango.

          • Draco T Bastard

            They are made by two adults fucking without appropriate protection against pregnancy, some of these children were conceived when the parents might have had money, might have been still living together, might still have been married, or might have been still alive.

            1. Contraceptives aren’t perfect
            2. “Some” = 66%

            • Sabine

              no contraceptive are not at all perfect.

              when people have sex without contraception, condoms, tubes tied, vasectomies they often make babies.

              The Sole Parent Benefit in NZ has replaced the Domestice Purpose Benefit, and all provides benefits to all ‘sole’ parents, including man, divorced single parents, widowed parents (as the widowers benefits which helped Mr. Key to survive while he was a child that his mother could not afford on her own, but she still had…thinking she was save and married when she had the child) was the first of the benefits to be cut. But then who cares about a hand full of widows, or widowers…

              other then that you have got nothing to say?

              Contraception for Man?
              Better Sex Ed for young ones?
              What about abusing fathers?
              Better working conditions?
              Better pay scales for the minimum wagers?

              Nothing? Nix? Zilch? Nada?


              • Draco T Bastard

                when people have sex without contraception, condoms, tubes tied, vasectomies they often make babies.

                My point was that even when people take all precautions they can still conceive and that 66% is more than “some”.

                • sabine

                  so we are nitpicking?
                  did i say something that was wrong? Or are you just upset that i did not look up numbers?

                  I still don’t get what you are trying to say?

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    I’ll say you’re barking up the wrong tree. Poverty and abuse has increased markedly over the last thirty years, in line with all sane expectations of neo-liberal policies.

                    The obvious solution is to stop pissing into the wind and reverse the policies that are causing the problem.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    You gave it all the wrong tilt.

                    By ignoring that contraceptives fail you implied that it was always the peoples fault.
                    By saying “some” you made it sound as if a minority of people conceived in a relationship and then circumstances changed rather than the majority.

                    Language is powerful and so you should be careful of what you say and how you say it.

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 3.1.2

        Anyone who proposes or supports this fascism belongs in prison.

        Isn’t that a bit…fascist… of you?

      • Nessalt 3.1.3

        wow, so a conversation about an ambulance at the bottom can’t be had alongside one about a fence at the top. Way to make sure nothing ever gets done because you hate consensus.

        What about the victims of your “victims”? Stopping society having the concurrent discussions is surely facist oppression for not thinking of their rights.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          The fact is that no-one is constructing the fence at the top, despite being told to over and over and over again. Instead, you just keep on proposing the same ineffectual self-serving shite.

          So excuse me for calling you trash – stop embodying it and I’ll stop saying so.

          • Draco T Bastard


          • Nessalt

            whereas you just rant and rave and abuse everyone who disagrees with you. You are such an intellectual light weight it’s no wonder the policies you champion get nowhere. it’s not because others are stupid, it’s because you are so blind to your own ignorance you have the honest belief you are a genius. you are the embodiment of the narcissism of social media generation.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              If pointing out that your “fence at the top” was torn down in the 1980s is ignorant, so be it.

              I note your avoidance of that topic in favour of projecting your character onto me.

        • Forcing someone to use birth control is one step away from sterilising them without their consent, and it certainly seems to resemble sexual assualt to me, depending on what sort of birth control you force them to use. (many are quite intimate to apply!) The only two types I can think of that wouldn’t amount to sexual assualt to force on someone still amount to forced administration of drugs, which we also shouldn’t do. (That would be forcing them to take hormonal birth control injections or pills)

          If the State really thinks it’s appropriate to proxy their medical decisions and force them to take medication, they should do it the only way there’s precedent to do it: have them committed to be treated for mental health problems. But we all know if they could do that, they would, so they have no argument to make here to force people into taking contraception.

    • scotty 3.2

      ‘but are you going to make sure it is used?’

      Are you making yourself available Rosemary? – good on you for mucking in and getting your hands dirty .

    • Karen 3.3

      Maybe find out why?

      In my experience people have a child because they want to have a child (unless it was an accidental pregnancy). If the baby is taken away then they try again.

      Instead of threatening compulsory sterilisation or contraception how about putting lots of resources into helping that family look after any child they have? Many have come from dysfunctional families themselves and it will take a lot of resources to provide the kind of supportive (not punitive) help that is required. The upside is that the next generation will be better equipped.

      Social services have been so run down in this country there is very little help available.

      • tracey 3.3.1

        I met with 2 seasoned social workers from CYPFS the other day. They talked at length about how they think and consult and work with the family long and hard before removing a child, and when they do remove a child, work hard to try and get the child back to the family.

        I have no reason to believe they were lying. Then Tolley and others commented on this report. It’s like there are 2 different CYPFS… one being sued for political purposes and one trying to help children with limited money, resource and support.

        • Karen

          I wasn’t suggesting social workers do not try to keep children within a family. The problem is that some families need far more support than individual social workers can provide, particularly as most social workers have too heavy a work load and are unable to build up enough trust over a long enough period to be truly effective. There is a also a very high turnover as many get burnt out. I say that as someone who has been a social worker, albeit a long time ago and not with CYPFS.

          There is not nearly enough good free addiction treatment available, women’s refuges are always struggling financially, many NGOs working in social service areas spend half their time trying to get funding. There is too little acknowledge of the stress created through poor housing and low incomes, both factors social workers generally can not do much about. Whanau Ora is a good concept but the funding for it was taken from various other schemes that were doing a good job, but had to close down through lack of money. Meanwhile Whanau Ora has taken a very long time to get its act together.

          There needs to be a much more holistic approach.

          • tracey

            I wasn’t meaning to suggest your were. I also said sued instead of used… Freudian slip maybe 😉

          • Matthew Whitehead

            That, and the government needs to accept that this area is woefully under-resourced, especially in prevention, and actually apply some priority to the problem, both in funding, manpower, and legislative attention.

    • tracey 3.4

      I’ve been wondering how come it has taken nearly 7 years in Government, and longer for some who were in Opposition before that, to realize the children are being failed by us all. Tolley spoke last week with such bewilderment and horror about how CYPFS is failing children you could be forgiven for thinking she and Paula never knew, despite both holding the portfolio

      Then their is the churlish meme she is perpetuating that CYPFS is wrong focusing on highly at risk children and budgets tot he detriment of long term outcomes, as though they magically decide that all by themselves without any Ministerial input…

      It’s a disgrace, all of it.

    • Naki man 3.5

      Good on you Rosemary McDonald, nice to hear from someone who knows what they are talking about and has done something to help with the issue.

      There is no way these scumbags should be able to continually breed children to abuse, I say neuter the fuckers but this government is way to pc for that to happen.

      • Rosemary McDonald 3.5.1

        I find the use of the expressions “scumbags” and “fuckers” to be distasteful Naki man.

        Whatever one’s initial visceral reaction may be to a mother who is given the option by cyfs to either keep this latest baby, or refuse their father entry into the family home because he has raped your two previous three month old babies ….and chooses to not to reject the father….(and I kid you not)….there is no need for such vitriolic disrespect.

        The reality is that some babies are conceived and gestated and born with complete and utter casualness.

        Not many.

        But some.

        And it is the mothers of these babies that need serious contraceptive intervention.

        If this opinion puts me slightly to the right of Attila the Hun…so be it.

        • tracey

          You agree Dad needs to be contraceptived too, right? And in this case, jailed. I presume he was jailed for the rapes?

          • Rosemary McDonald

            Tracey…”Dad”…we came to refer to this lifeform as ‘sperm donors’.

            “I presume he was jailed for the rapes?”

            I’m not sure…probably not as he was around to get into the next, and nearly the next…..

            You need hard evidence for a conviction….

            and may I invoke the “Lashlie Effect” here?

            It is really hard not to speak in specifics, its really wrong to generalise about the children we cared for and about.

            As an addendum to my response to DT Bastard’s abuse …. after eight years, there was just one social worker in the local large office who we were willing to deal with.

            She wore sensible shoes, was no nonsense, had an expectation that the parent/s would step up to the plate and accept help to sort their shit.

            And if that was not going to happen…and you can tell…she would move heaven and earth to get that child into a secure long term placement as quickly as possible.

            She did not say dumb stuff like ” he’s only two, he doesn’t understand”, when as a foster parent you wave a big red flag that this wee kid silently weeps as he is returning from access with his three sibs who are in another foster home…together.

            We never cared for a kid that did not need to be in care.

            We just hated what cyfs did with them afterwards.

            We honestly believed that by trying to work within the cyfs system we were just facilitating more abuse and neglect.

          • Sabine

            no tracey,
            well some don’t get jailed, they get name suppression for being a prominent new zealander that can’t be named, lest his victims will be named. blahblablah

    • tracey 3.6

      I’d really like to hear more about the experience of being a foster parent Rosemary. How are you supported and what is it like doing this crucial role for all of us? maybe a guest post in this?

      • Rosemary McDonald 3.6.1

        “maybe a guest post in this?”

        Hell no.

        And subject myself to shit slinging by the OAB /DTB bully boy gang?

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          Oh you poor wee shrinking violet, it was you who accused others of constipated ideology before you embarked on your ideological rant. Throwing shit around but as soon as the boot’s on the other foot you’re being bullied? Pfft.

          Whether you like it or not, the roots of violence are economic as well as social. Some of us want our government to pay attention to these facts because we aren’t comfortable with infant mortality.

          There is no such thing as the “Lashlie Effect”. Do you honestly believe inventing non-existent phenomena is a positive contribution? At least you aren’t a twisted sadist like Naki Trash I guess.

          • Matthew Whitehead

            Hey asshole. You want to sign your name to that abuse? 🙂

            Rosemary is at least engaging even if her experiences have left her with some extreme positions. (Probably because she’s dealing with a wholly inadequate state support system that can’t do crap to stop this problem re-uccuring)

            Commenting on a thread and going full author on your own opinions are two very different steps. Rosemary has the right not to want to take the jump without you trying to force your way down her throat kicking and screaming, and trust me when I say dealing with unruly commenters is its own special type of hell.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Rosemary has the right not to make judgemental passive-aggressive comments.

              You have the right to learn the difference between robust rebuttal and a personal attack.

              Perhaps you lack the wit.

    • joe90 3.7

      Amongst it all there’s a fucking big elephant being ignored – unmet mental health needs and the corresponding inter agency pass the parcel shenanigans, mental health versus personality disorder.

  4. I thought we had put this to bed a century ago .

    Organised New Zealand eugenics groups in the early 1900s advocated sterilising those who were ‘unfit’ to breed. They urged upper-class and middle-class women to stop using contraception and to breed more, to stop the country being dominated by ‘defectives’

    • sabine 4.1

      We need to be very careful that we don’t run into a fully governmental funded eugenics programm. also if the children of rich people end up causig trouble (like that Holmes Girl) or are getting abused by their parents, will the same governmental care be applied? Or is it just young women that have gotten pregnant, like Paula Bennett once upon a time?

      • One Anonymous Bloke 4.1.1

        A good line of attack would be to go after the “doctors” who break their oaths to collaborate with the National Party. Start with formal complaints against them to the medical council and the HRC. Inform the UN.

        • Naturesong

          Has that been tried with the MSD “welfare addiction” doctors?

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Their code of ethics (pdf) says:

            All medical practitioners, including those who may not be engaged directly in clinical practice, will acknowledge and accept the following Principles of Ethical Behaviour:
            1. Consider the health and well being of the patient to be your first priority.
            2. Respect the rights, autonomy and freedom of choice of the patient…

            So who's going to prescribe contraception or perform surgery against their victim's will? And how soon after that will the police have to get involved?

            • weka

              They won’t have to perform against the patient’s will because the state will have coerced the person long before they appear in front of the surgeon. Or the surgery etc is justified on the grounds that if it doesn’t happen the patient will lose their income, so it’s in the best interests of the patient. Easy outs.

              btw, there have been people practicing medicine unethically since there’s been a medical profession. Society’s not been too bothered before and it’s already sanctioning the ghettoisation of beneficiaries.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Good points both. I see Slobodan Tolley is backing down.

                • weka

                  It’s always hard to tell in these situations if people like Tolley are just incredibly stupid, or if this was simply another dog whistle/diversionary tactic.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Her crass provocation of educators suggests the former. Her academic record supports the thesis.

            • tracey

              The Law trumps a code of ethics.

  5. ianmac 5

    Decades ago thousands of women were sterilised by Government ticket booths where unbeknownst to the women, they were zapped with Xrays. Outcry when discovered of course. I think that this may have been in India.

  6. Lucy 6

    If CYF is removing children from the same parents then wouldn’t the money that is paid to foster parents be better used teaching those parents proper parenting skills and life skills. I knew a woman who had had a few children removed by CYFs and her problem was the men she was getting involved in. But she continued to have children because removing a child meant that she was grieving and thought that a new baby would replace the child that had been stolen.
    If you start having babies at 14 you have no skills to bring them up and our society dumps you on the dpb with no support or care.

    • tracey 6.1

      Agreed. Also it needs to start earlier. With programmes in schools for girls to build their self esteem, their sense of self and value and their ability to navigate the shark infested waters that are adolescence and looking for love from boys who just want sex and babies who will love them forever.

      Such programmes can be as simple as self defence classes which Ms Bennett decided cost too much.


      Let’s fund the teaching of all our children of respect in relationships etc… it’s not about teaching them about how to have sex but about how to have relationships and what it all means


      Fund THAT Tolley!

      • Rosie 6.1.1

        +1 tracey.

        Teaching respect and safety would be a great foundation for young people who are at a point where they’re about to become sexually active.

        • tracey

          BUT it doesn’t happen properly or extensively because of the minority of voices such as Colin Craig’s and Family First.

          Being able to afford and access abortions if mistakes are made does not mean the middle and wealthy classes chidlren are not impacted by these issues.

          • Rosie

            “Being able to afford and access abortions if mistakes are made does not mean the middle and wealthy classes chidlren are not impacted by these issues.”

            Exactly. The programmes initiated by RPE and funded by MOH in Auckland schools, mentioned in your link, would benefit all social groups in NZ. These are fundamentals all young people need to learn about. Helps them gain a broader more holistic view of what sex is about too. Would be great if such programmes were available in all schools.

            You could only imagine the brakes groups the Cons and family first would put in such programmes. They would prefer if sex ed was limited to “abstinence kids! No sex before marriage!”, like the loopy silver ring thing they had in the States.

            • tracey

              It is always odd to me that whenever a conservative hears sex education they obviously start imaging positions… whereas most sex ed programmes are about respect, biology, consequences, self worth and so on…

      • red-blooded 6.1.2

        Hey, tracey, I work in a coed school – please don’t assume that boys are automatically “sharks” or “just want sex”. Boys are just as emotionally complex as girls and plenty of them want intimacy and love.

        I know that’s not the main issue being discussed, and I agree with the general idea that relationship skills should be taught at school and (hopefully) at home. I don’t think we have to assume that all girls or women who have unplanned pregnancies have been in some way abused, though.

  7. It makes you wonder what ever happened to this government’s promise of ‘full wrap-around support’ for those in most need.

    • Here’s a link about the ‘wrap-around’ support – see p. 3, para 11, last bullet point:

      11. In August 2011, Cabinet agreed that welfare assistance for 16 – 19 year olds be reformed to:
      · discourage an early reliance on welfare receipt
      · require teens to remain in education or training, or to be in work, in return for assistance
      · ensure that they learn good budgeting skills so that they are better able to manage their money, and have the strategies to cope when resources are limited
      · support the development of their parenting skills (teen parents only)
      · ensure that cost is not a barrier to children of teen parents accessing childcare
      · support teens to access services including, where appropriate, family planning services, to address a range of needs that will enhance longer-term outcomes
      · provide wrap-around support to improve social outcomes for teens and their children.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 7.1.1

        It’s a meaningless euphemism. Are they talking about some sort of semi-rigid Gladwrap? Or get the fuck into line or you’ll be going to see the Doctor?

        • tracey

          or the blanket they place around you immediately after you have the contraceptive device implanted.

          Murmurs of this kind at least are an admission that we have failed and the discussion is now about the answer.

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            The answer is to destroy the Douglas/Richardson legacy. Drag the SOE model into the public square and cut its head off. Restore human rights and the rule of law.

            Get a camel, pass it through the eye of a needle, then make Tories drink the result.

      • Chris 7.1.2

        There are already changes that reflect this sort of sentiment designed to help lessen the outrage later on, like less money and a more stringent work test if a subsequent child is born while in receipt of a benefit. The plans are certainly there to do it. The nats were “dismissing” work testing benefits paid for caring for children and time-limiting any benefits way back in the 1990s. Look what we’ve got now? They’re going to try to make it happen, all right.

        • Draco T Bastard


          As far as I can make out the right wing have been in favour of eugenics since forever.

          • Stuart Munro

            They wouldn’t be if they weren’t confident they’d control the assessment criteria – at least half of Gnats are below average.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      They’ve wrapped it up and closed it down – exactly as planned.

      If National say that they’re going to be nice to the poor they mean the exact opposite. The only people they care about is the 1% and they’ll do anything to ensure that the rest of the population works to make them richer no matter how much damage it does to society. That’s what Nationals attacks on beneficiaries is all about – forcing people to work to make the 1% richer.

  8. Rosie 8

    I see the word eugenics mentioned a few times in the comments. There is absolutely no other word for it: A group within society has been isolated and targeted and the state suggests they want to intervene to prevent reproduction within this group, with no regard for the rights of those people. This becomes a human rights issue.

    Would be better for ALL people to be able to access free contraception through well funded family planning centres. Sexual health and contraception should be a well integrated part of a public health system, no different from say, dentistry, which also should be free for ALL people.

    Agree with Red Baron re Tolley’s statement about the responsibility for contraception falling to women. She talks about tubal ligation, specifically for beneficiaries. Again, tubal ligation should be accessible to ALL women, as should long term contraception such as the pill, or injection but options for men need to be free too, such as vasectomies. Men need to share an equal responsibility in family planning.

    And condoms for EVERYONE! No one should be having to pay for the basics such as condoms.

    • northshoredoc 8.1

      Hi Rosie

      Long and short acting contraception and condoms are all fully funded by PHARMAC and freely available.

      • Rosie 8.1.1

        Are they really? For every single person regardless of income? Are they absolutely free?I wasn’t aware of that.

        We had to pay for a vasectomy when we got married two decades ago. Are they now free? Prior to that we had to pay for condoms. (They aren’t cheap) We enquired at family planning about free contraception but weren’t eligible.

        Has it now changed? Where do people go to get this free contraception? Do you, as a Dr, write prescriptions for patients?

        Serious question.

        • weka

          “Do you, as a Dr, write prescriptions for patients?”

          And do you charge them for the consult?

          In addition to contraception needing to be free, it also needs to be easily accessible.

        • northshoredoc

          Hi Rosie

          Family planning has th most comprehensive answers to your questions.


          • Rosie

            Thank you. I read through, nothing has changed, eg: from the family planning page for consultations:

            Under 22: Free
            22 and over with Community Services Card: $5.00
            22 and over with no Community Services Card: $27.00

            Access to low cost contraception is NOT free. I see some women who fit into the above category can get some hormone contraception free and condoms are $5 for 144. Great, but that should be for everyone, and it isn’t.

            It’s not universally available.

            So when you are saying some contraceptives are “fully funded by PHARMAC and freely available” you aren’t really telling the truth.

            So instead of the National Government going down this ideologically driven eugenics path, they could instead do the right thing for society as a whole by including universal low cost and free family planning into the public health system.

            Then people have the choice, regardless of income, on how they plan their families. There’s a catch there though, for the nats. Such a move would eliminate their eugenics drive. Having universal access to contraception puts people on an equal footing, and they don’t want that.

            • northshoredoc

              Hi Rosie

              I agree I don’t believe there is any reason to have the $5.00 part charge for those who can access a community services card. That being said if people are unable to motivate themselves to pay around $10 per annum for contraception then it is far less of a financial issue and far more of an education al one in my opinion.

              • Rosie

                $10 per annum on contraception is actually more like $144 per annum, if you’re using condoms, assuming a pack of 12 will last a month…………

                And that figure is the cheapest price on the market for non comms service card holders, that the FP put on it, in your link.

                They may sound like a small dent in the budget to you but for people who have been stuck on the same wages for 6 years with their accommodation costs and bills rising like an overwhelming tide, that amount makes a difference. Far better if access to contraception was universal, like the common drug prescription. It is a health issue after all.

                • Rosie

                  Apologies Doc. Just checked FP link re costs again. You CAN get condoms on prescription for $5 for 144 even if you’re not a comms service card holder.

                  At this price, theoretically, no one should be paying the full market place price of $12 – $20 dollars per 12 pack.

              • Draco T Bastard

                That’s a great argument for not charging as well. As you say, it’s not the money but the education. I suspect that a lot of people don’t even know that they can get cheap contraceptives through Family Planning.

                • weka

                  It’s still unclear from this conversation but as far as I can tell if you go to a GP to get the prescription instead of FP there will be a charge for the visit as well. Lots of people don’t live near a FP clinic.

                  • Rosie

                    Yes, you will be charged. Don’t know what Doctors charge their comms services card holders for a consult though.

                    • weka

                      so the people that can have cheap contraception are those that are on a CSC and can access a FP clinic during opening hours. Doesn’t sound like it’s being taken that seriously by the govt and it certainly belies that idea that there is free contraception in NZ.

            • The Chairman

              Rosie, although not universal, from October 2012 all women on welfare and their daughters were eligible for fully subsidize long-acting reversible contraception (LARC) including injections, implants, and IUDs,

              It was a recommendation of the Welfare Working Group, headed by Paula Rebstock.

              Funding is provided through WINZ.

              Rebstock also heads the panel currently overseeing the overhaul of Child, Youth and Family, which Tolley is awaiting their recommendations. Whether or not to force sterilize apparently one of which is being considered.

              • tracey

                I wonder how actively they promote it, and educate the men and women who visit this WINZ you write of?

                • weka

                  “Funding is provided through WINZ.”

                  Which involves another whole layer of bullshit hoop jumping that is a barrier. Also, are the doctors visits free or just the contraception?

                  If they were serious about their policy, all contraception would be free.

                  • The Chairman

                    Yes, I hear what you’re saying regarding the hoop-jumping, but the bureaucracy is generally required to ensure funding isn’t handed out haphazardly.

                    From my understanding, the whole process is fully subsidised.

                    As the health budget is already stretched, cost constraints are clearly why it hasn’t been extended universally.

                    However, it does cover Tolley’s intended target group.

                    As for Tracey’s question, according to Tolley, we need to be getting in there with better contraception and family planning advice. Therefore, if the Minister in charge is saying that, clearly it’s not actively promoted well enough. Which is no doubt part of the problem.

                    I see Tolley is now backing down from her original stance. Ms Tolley says forced sterilisation is definitely not being considered.

                    • weka

                      If the people most in need of support to limit family size are already in situations where they need support, then offering them support that has barriers to access is a losing proposition from the start. We’re talking about a class of people who can’t afford to take their kids to the doctor, so things like a bus trip across town to WINZ can be significant issues.

                      If they then have to pay for the doctors appt, the service isn’t fully subsidised.

                      I’d also hazard a guess that the money spent on bureaucracy needed to run the scheme is more than the money ‘wasted’ on people who wouldn’t need teh service were the service offered without the barriers.

                      None of that is surprising because the ideology behind Rebstock is anti-welfare and wellbeing. They wouldn’t know how to help people in a genuine way if Mother Teresa was part of the team.

                    • The Chairman

                      I’m assuming the barrier in this case is merely the formality of filling out a form. Which could no doubt be done online, through the mail, or perhaps through the aid of a social worker with little or no added expense (or hassle) at all .

                      Are you suggesting taxpayers would approve of the added cost of providing free universal contraception, opposed to the current more targeted approach?

                    • weka

                      We could be providing free contraception to CSC holders. That system is already in place. But I support free healthcare for all, and I’d put free contraception far above some other kinds healthcare we fund or subsidise (eg IVF).

                      “I’m assuming the barrier in this case is merely the formality of filling out a form. Which could no doubt be done online, through the mail, or perhaps through the aid of a social worker with little or no added expense (or hassle) at all.”

                      I seriously doubt it’s that straight forward (having lots of experience with WINZ).

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      The biggest barrier is poverty itself: inequality fosters distrust.

                  • The Chairman

                    Yes, IMO taxpayers would be more approving of targeting it to CSC holders opposed to free universal cover.

                    Free healthcare is a wonderful thing, it’s the cost of providing it we largely struggle with.

                    What one prefers is largely subjective. In a democracy, we have to deal with what the majority prefers. In a representative democracy, we have to put up with the wishes of the party the majority preferred.

                    Generally, I don’t see why it wouldn’t be a simple, straight forward process.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      So the obvious goal is to simplify it.

                      A way to do that is to educate legislators in simple concepts like the rule of law, human rights, the rules of evidence, morality and ethics.

                      Legislators who choose to transgress these boundaries are acting against the national interest and are therefore legitimate military and/or judicial targets.

                    • weka

                      “Generally, I don’t see why it wouldn’t be a simple, straight forward process.”

                      Theoretically. But in reality there are at least two obvious obstacles. One is its WINZ, which is a system that’s been fucked over so many times in the past 30 years that it’s now so dysfunctional that it’s probably unfixable. This doens’t mean there aren’t good people in there and sometimes good systems, but with the recent reforms it looks to me like just bizarre levels of unworkability (have you seen the paperwork involved in applying for the dole?).

                      The other is the underlying ethos, which is one of control and punishment. You can’t care for people that way, and contraceptive provision is healthcare. They start from the place of judging people as being incompetent, lazy, greedy, stupid etc. and build their system around that, which makes it a dysfunctional system. Plus all the stuff that others have been saying about the causes of poverty and what poverty causes. If the people we are concerned about (that we want to care about) were treated with respect as a starting point, then the systems would be built around respect and care rather than control and punishment. I just don’t believe that control and punishment systems can ever be competent at caring, only at punishing (and limited success at controlling).

                      /nambypamby liberalism

                      So yeah, you’d think that it would be as simply as applying online and going to a GP, but that’s only true if the system cares.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Weka, I’m confident your assessment of our ability to change is unduly pessimistic. Examples abound, from the creation of the welfare state in the first place, to the response to ozone depletion, to Slobodan Tolley’s craven and dishonest retreat from her National Party values.

                      Think of it as Bill English’s enforced diet of rotten fish and rats.

                    • weka

                      I’m always optimistic about the potential for change. I can’t see National and co changing any time soon and that’s what my comment was about. Tolley’s retreat is good, and a small battle victory, but let’s wait and see if NZ in general can become more compassionate again.

                  • The Chairman

                    Despite the pitfalls of WINZ, it’s a cost saving objective of the Government, therefore the process would be streamlined. Unlike applying for a benefit.

                    Apparently it’s merely a special needs grant one needs to apply for.

                    This so-called healthcare policy came under fire from groups such as Action Against Poverty and the Greens.

                    • weka

                      I’d be surprised if an SNG for medical contraception can be applied for over the internet.

                      You say the process ‘would’ be streamlined because the govt wants to save money. That doesn’t mean it ‘is’ streamlined. Still looks like barriers to me.

                  • The Chairman

                    No it doesn’t mean that. However, logic would imply so.

                    I’d be surprised if a special needs form can’t be obtained online or through the mail.

                    I think you are being a little extremist. Filling out a special needs from isn’t a major barrier – nor does it amount to ‘barriers’ as you continue to imply.

                    • weka

                      “I’d be surprised if a special needs form can’t be obtained online or through the mail.”

                      See if you can find that online. I’ll be interested to hear if you can find it, and how easy it was, and if it’s clear form the webpage on what the process is for applying.

                      But it’s not just about obtaining the form. It’s whether the person you deal with is willing to do this via non-face to face means. For instance to get an SNG you have to provide proof of assets eg bank account statement. These are things that can be done electronically, but not everyone has that capacity and not all WINZ staff will work in this way. Most staff will want a face to face appointment esp if they don’t know the client. I’m talking generalities here. Perhaps the contraceptive scheme got set up differently, but I’d be surprised if it was. Most staff are overstretched as it is and I’m assuming the scheme just got loaded into the existing system of SNGs, payments, processing etc.

                      I’m not being extremist, I’m basing my opinion on many years experience with WINZ both myself and with many people I know. Things are changing re the internet, but WINZ isn’t the functional streamlining organisation you want. It’s actually full of bureaucractic inefficiencies (for a whole lot of reasons). It also routinely makes people jump through hoops that are difficult. Barriers like this are pretty normal for WINZ clients, ask around.

                      Also note, not everyone has easy internet access.

                      The things I am talking about are all existing barriers to WINZ entitlements, wellknown to most peopel working the are. It’s not unreasonable to assume that this is true for the contraceptive scheme as well, although I am happy to be proven wrong.

                  • The Chairman

                    No. Implying obtaining and filling out a special needs form is such a major barrier it’s preventing people from obtaining their entitlement does seem a little extremist.

                    According to the WINZ website You can call Work and Income’s contact centre, and apply for the grant over the phone.

                  • The Chairman

                    Sure (re link). And it wasn’t difficult to find.


                    Moreover, it all seems rather simple and straightforward. Can’t get much easier than this below (also from their website/link)

                    If you are eligible and have an active payment card, funds will be made available for payment immediately.

                    This means that if you’re eligible and have an active payment card, by calling while you’re at the medical centre you can have the contraceptive administered and pay for it immediately, so you don’t have to return for another appointment.

                    • weka

                      Interesting, much easier than usual SNGs I think. But, if you don’t have a payment card you have to visit an office (have a think about that as a barrier). They also seem to be saying that they will take the woman’s word for how much the proceedure, GP visit etc will cost, which would be highly unusual for WINZ.

                      “by calling while you’re at the medical centre you can have the contraceptive administered and pay for it immediately, so you don’t have to return for another appointment.”

                      Which doesn’t take into account the often very long waits to get through at the call centre.

                      Still, it does seem like they’ve made special allowances in this scheme that they don’t normally, which makes me think better of it.

                  • The Chairman

                    Happy to have widened your perspective on the matter.

                    Here’s a little more to ponder:

                    WINZ offices are in most town centers (and in a number of suburbs) nationwide, thus aren’t generally difficult to get too.

                    Moreover, those at the hard end, already receiving extra services, would be cardholders.

                    When ringing a many number of organizations, how long one waits tends to come down to luck and timing. WINZ are not running a 111 service.

                    • weka

                      Meanwhile, the lived experience of beneficiaries and advocates is different. I live in rural NZ, so the perspective on availability of offices is not the same as yours. I also know people who don’t own a car or drivers licence, so if they live somewhere with shit public transport, or using public transport is difficult, then getting to an office isn’t as straight forward as you are saying. This is the difference between looking at what should work for the majority and what doesn’t work for the people that are struggling. WINZ are not there to serve beneficiaries unless something happens to force WINZ to behave better.

                      Since Ashburton you can’t get into most offices without an ID. Left your ID at home because the kids pulled everything out of your wallet last night and you didn’t have time to check that everything went back in? Tough shit, come back on another day.

                      I know someone who did a public transport trip to town, dropped off forms, and a few days later the WINZ staffer told him they’d been lost and he’d have to bring in a new set. Despite him being ill. If he didn’t bring them in, they wouldn’t process the application and the payment wouldn’t get made. This isn’t an unusual story.

                      “When ringing a many number of organizations, how long one waits tends to come down to luck and timing. WINZ are not running a 111 service.”

                      WINZ run the call centre as if people phoning in have nothing better to do with their time. It’s not just about luck and timing, it’s about access to essential services. GIven that WINZ will now cut benefits on the basis of beneficiaries not returning phone calls, I take that as not giving a shit rather than being the same as other organisations. We see this degree of marginalisation across the service. It isn’t comprehensive, and there are still good people working at WINZ, but most beneficiaries I know will tell multiple stories of incompetency, harassment, punishment, humiliation etc.

                      I’m glad that WINZ appear to have a better service for LARC than the rest of what they do, but I also know that what looks good on paper doesn’t necessarily translate in real life practice.

                  • The Chairman

                    Generally, getting to an office is not a problem for the majority. I’m sure arrangements can be made for those in difficult situations. You’re clearly nit-picking, attempting to paint anything as a major barrier.

                    And again, this policy isn’t so much seen as a service to beneficiaries, this is largely viewed as a cost saving service. Hence, the streamlining shown above. Moreover, the flaw (in your argument) of trying to compare it with other services WINZ provide.

                    If you’ve got genuine evidence of the Government putting up a road block (preventing them from maximizing savings) on a cost saving policy they themselves implemented, then clearly (if you’re correct) there is something there for the opposition to hold the Government to task on.

                    Can you point me to any comments from the opposition to this effect?

                    • weka

                      no-one wants to touch beneficiary issues politically.

                      I’m not nitpicking, I’m pointing out that your ideas about what should happen often don’t work out in practice. I think you are unaware of what the barriers are to access. It’s a pretty well known phenomenon within WINZ that too many people can’t access entitlements for various reasons.

                      But yeah, it works for National. They save money where they can without having to implement policies that empower people to better their situation and the people that fall through the cracks can
                      continue to be blamed via the dogwhistles. Win win.

                      I don’t buy the cost savings thing. So many things that the govt does are false economies. It’s not about saving money, it’s about chanelling the money where they want it to go.

                  • The Chairman

                    This isn’t a beneficiary issue. This is challenging the Government’s competence in implementing policy and policy outcome. Namely, taxpayer cost savings,

                    Were any savings produced? Did they meet expectations? Were road blocks hampering effectiveness? Etc…

                    No you’re nit picking. If you genuinely considered what I was saying you would have seen I initially stated WINZ offices aren’t generally difficult to get too. Indicating, I’m aware there are some in more difficult situations. And that those smaller regional services tend to make concessions, operating differently, opposed to larger regions.

                    Moreover, you would have taken on board it’s viewed as a cost saving policy, thus is not largely comparable to other services WINZ provide. But no, you continue to make comparisons in your attempt to nit-pick.

                    You don’t buy what I’m telling you (re it’s viewed as a cost saving policy) or you don’t buy that it’s actually producing long-term savings?

                    Once again, if savings aren’t matching up to what was initially touted, then surely the opposition would be holding them to task?

                    Perhaps they’ve been to busy fueling the flag debate?

              • Rosie

                Hi Chairman. Happy that women who are supported by WINZ are eligible for contraception funding. Not happy that our government would consider enforced sterilisation. Their narrative around reproduction is alarming, and dark, really dark.

                • The Chairman

                  Thankfully, Tolley seems to have retreated from her original stance. The public backlash must have sent her and the Party a message.

                  But given time, I suspect they’ll have another crack at it.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    With any luck they’ll follow the GOP into the abyss: stroking their paranoid constituency’s feeble fantasies until they become unelectable. In the meantime we still have to develop clever strategies to defend New Zealand against them.

              • RedBaronCV

                And why don’t they “offer” the same free contraception to the fathers and the son’s of women and children on benefits.

                The sub theme of your mother is on the benefit therefore you (the daughter) are some kind of a slut – Tolley needs to grow up and realise that males are involved in the process too but she’s too busy blamimg the women

                • The Chairman

                  Indeed, like mother, like daughter seems to be the prevailing theme.

                  Perhaps the panel will recommend changes in this area.

                  • RedBaronCV

                    They shouldn’t have been so immature to think this was a good idea in the first place. Then they wouldn’t needs “changes”

      • tracey 8.1.2

        You agree that education programmes in our schools would be a very effective tool though, don’t you? Teaching about relationships, respect, consequences, boys and girls etc etc?

        • northshoredoc

          I would be surprised if that wasn’t the most effective intervention in countries like NZ.

          • tracey

            And yet we continue to allow minority voices to divert us from funding it. Sad indeed.

            • northshoredoc

              Pretty sure this is funded under the hair courses within all secondary schools in NZ – although I’m not in this area so someone else maybe able to enlighten us.

    • Sabine 8.2

      Funny, be a young women, maybe white, and healthy, and with means, go to a doctor and try to get your tubes tied.


      Cause maybe one day, when she met Charming the Prince she will want children.

      but hey if you are a young women, maybe a shade of brown or otherwise not quite white, and healthy and maybe with only little means we have a white rich Women suggest that these tubes should be tied pronto, with or without consent.

      Fuck, we have people in this country that would like to close down Planned Parenthood, cause abortions and won’t people think of the unborn, while having no issue ignoring all the born children.

  9. One Anonymous Bloke 9

    Raw meat for the base. Makes me wonder what particular dismal failure they’re trying to divert attention from this time.

  10. Puckish Rogue 10

    Does anyone have more up to date figures then this?


    • One Anonymous Bloke 10.1

      Yes. National’s policies lead directly to more inequality and worse outcomes, and then they assault the victims. Unemployment’s going up again I see.

      Dear Leader runs a misery factory while you cheer him on. Now you’re up to date.

      • Puckish Rogue 10.1.1

        Yes of course silly me, its all John Keys fault, very good

        Does anyone else, preferably someone that hasn’t been smoking up this early in the morning, have anymore up to date figures on adoption in NZ?

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          If it were all Jon Key’s fault you could simply replace him and see an immediate improvement. Sadly, the rot and incompetence go far deeper than that.

          That’s why they need vacuous cheerleaders.

          • Puckish Rogue

            The point is in 1973 there were 2000 adoptions and in 2012 there 21 adoptions. Couple with the problems CYPs is having then surely this is one of the issues to be looked at?

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Why don’t you dig a little deeper into those raw numbers and see if you can find out the reasons for such a marked decrease? If you still think your disgusting bestial instincts deserve discussion after that I’ll be more than happy to set you straight.

              • Puckish Rogue

                Its far too early to be drinking or smoking, get outside and have some fresh air it’ll do you good

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  That’s right: your argument has zero foundation. Better shoot the messenger.

                  • Puckish Rogue

                    I asked a question, I didn’t pose an arguement and if you had bothered to read my first post properly rather then read the name of the poster and assume what the post was about you’d know that.

                    • weka

                      “I didn’t pose an arguement”

                      Yeah you did. You just did it in a passive weasly way.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      All you seem to be doing is demanding that children be put up for adoption. For some strange train you seem top think that children not being put up for adoption is an issue that needs addressing.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      …surely this is one of the issues to be looked at?

                      Have you found out the reasons for such a marked decline yet? They render your argument moot. I think you knew that already.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      No Weka I didn’t, your opinion doesn’t change my intention

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Nah, Weka’s right, or you’d be discussing the reasons for the decline instead of lashing out at me.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      Well Draco I’m wondering if theres a corellation between the amount of children going through CYFs (and being failed by the system) and the decline in amount of children being adopted

                      Is it because less people want to adopt, less children being put up for adoption, would more adoption help the problem or hinder it?

                      I don’t know and I’m curious

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      So you’re incapable of Googling it. Despite the plethora of articles you could use to educate yourself, here you are whining that no-one will do your homework for you.

                      Mendacious bludger.

                    • tracey

                      Since the 1970’s you will find there has emerged new technology quite relevant to your knowledge gap.

                      It is in the field of fertility treatments. In the early days we called them “test tube babies”. This was because for parents who couldn’t conceive (and who previously turned to adoption), they could take sperm and an ovum (egg) and within a laboratory seek to get fertilisation active. They could then implant the result into the woman’s uterus.

                      The Technology expanded to the point where they could use other people’s sperm (if the man was infertile) or another ovum (if the woman were infertile), then there was surrogacy. It has all move don so far (and seemingly without your knowledge) that there are now ethical debates over the creation of “designer” babies and defect-free babies.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      Thanks Tracey

                      On that I thought Gattaca was a good movie that raised some interesting questions.

                      I had just assumed that as the population increased there’d be parents who couldn’t afford to go the IVF treatment way

                      Is it something like two treatments for free (if accepted) then you pay for your own treatments or something

                      It seems likes theres a definite economic barrier to the IVF whereas adoption might be a more finacially viable option for some?

                    • tracey

                      Haven’t seen it, but just read the premise at Wikipedia…

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      😆 at PR getting his information and political position from a movie, like BM and Mad Max, reality is just too difficult to think about.

                    • McFlock

                      gattaca is an excellent movie.

                      It is also completely irrelevant to the issue of tories wanting to sterilize the poor.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      No it doesn’t McFlock but I was mentioning it as tracey had brought up the whole designer baby thing

                    • McFlock


                      Yes, Tracey pointed out a major hole in your initial distraction attempt, and made an incidental comment about possible ramifications of that issue, so you took that opportunity to further distract us from the tory obsession with poor people’s reproductive organs.

                      I mean, seriously – tories bitch about the nanny state, but barely blink when nact wants to control the fertility of poor people.

                      And whenever a tory says they want to “encourage” a poor person to do something, their meaning is to “threaten the poor person with starvation and homelessness until they do that thing”.

      • The lost sheep 10.1.2

        I was concerned when you invoked the right wing ‘personal responsibility’ meme last week OAB.
        So glad to see you have come to your senses.
        All negative outcomes for individuals are still entirely the fault of Government. Whew.

    • tracey 10.2

      I don’t but I know that prior to 1980 or even further into the late 80’s contraception was a VERY touchy topic in NZ. Patricia Bartlett was working hard to get Life of Brian made R18 and abortion was a difficult topic to raise with your parents and many doctors.

  11. mpledger 11

    Many women have side effects from hormonal contraception. Is the govt going to force that on these women? What would their response be if one of these women dies?

    Are they going to force women who have a religious belief that contraception is wrong?
    Or will interact badly with other medication that a women is on?
    Or will interact badly with alcohol/drugs that the women is known to be addicted too?

    • weka 11.1

      they’re not talking about women, they’re talking about beneficiaries and other third class objects of derision. That’s why they can even have this conversation. If they were talking about women, there’d be outrage.

      (agreed on the clinical issues and don’t trust the various bodies involved to get that right enough).

      • tracey 11.1.1

        Perhaps someone needs to ask a direct question of the Minister, like

        “does this discussion include those men who have parented multiple children they are unable to support and are we going to enforce vasectomies on them? And how many children before we do that? Now THAT is ” “a conversation that New Zealanders, perhaps, need to have”.

  12. Lanthanide 12

    John Key “thinks” (despite all the evidence to the contrary) that parents on the DPB are “breeding for a business”. That kind of sick and stupid attitude can never be allowed to control reproductive rights.

    Well that’s not really relevant to the discussion at hand, which is families that bring new babies into the world, only for them to not be taken care of, resulting in CYFs taking them from the families.

    In this case, there is no “breeding for a business” because the family is not keeping the child, so there can be no increase in benefit payments to that family.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1

      No, the real issue is that the National Party attacks the victims of its own incompetence and greed. In a system that creates poverty, acting all surprised when there are poor people is pretty low if you ask me.

    • weka 12.2

      “In this case, there is no “breeding for a business” because the family is not keeping the child, so there can be no increase in benefit payments to that family.”

      That would depend on how old the child is when it’s taken into care.

      ‘Breeding for business’ is a carefully crafted meme from the cruel right and it applies here as a dog whistle and distraction even if its not pedantically correct. There’s also a connection between the meme and the policy (which I believe is the point r0b is making). It doesn’t have to be rational.

      • Lanthanide 12.2.1

        Ahhhh, right. The background meme of ‘breeding for a business’ will be playing in people’s minds with this new announcement, even though this particular announcement doesn’t have anything to do with it.

        • tracey

          A bit like Seymour suggesting we can’t keep extending parental leave because then people will abuse the system… you know get a job… have a baby and receive paternity leave until they go back to work…. a GREAT rort.

          • Chris

            Yeah, and everyone knows that life on a benefit is such a cruise. I can’t understand why everyone isn’t having kids as soon as they can. Heck, time’s money. Need to start popping them out now.

        • Puddleglum

          I don’t think there’s a particularly long trail of inferences between the notion that some young people (women) are ‘breeding for a business’ and a policy of providing contraception for those who have their children taken off them because of a risk of abuse.

          One trail would roughly go like this:

          1. Some young people are encouraged to ‘breed for a business’ because of the DPB.
          2. ‘Breeding for a business’ is not a good motive for having children and does not suggest an attitude of care for the children (because they are seen as financial ‘assets’).
          3. Such parents (who ‘breed for a business) are therefore more likely to be abusive towards their children and have their children taken off them by CYFS than are other parents.
          4. Therefore, coercing such parents to take contraception not only prevents removal of further children but also discourages breeding for a business (i.e., because there is a large overlap between those who ‘breed for a business’ and likelihood of abusive parenting).

          Of course I don’t expect most people to lay out those inferences to themselves in any conscious way. Far more likely to go straight from 1 to 4 with 2 and 3 being implicit.

          In general, I’d imagine that very few people consciously lay out the logic of their positions and reflect on the likely validity.

          Most of us just ‘feel’ that what we think is right and, if pushed (and lucky/ practiced enough), might manage retrospectively to extract some kind of logic to support what we ‘feel’.

          • Lanthanide

            Good points.

            I think I tend to use the ‘laying things out logically’ way of thinking more than the average person might (which leads to my pedantry). It’s far from exclusive of course, but I seem prone to it.

            • Puddleglum

              So am I 😊

              It can be a curse at times – and a recipe for getting frustrated with arguments that don’t seem to have been produced in that way but may, nevertheless, have some incidental logic potentially supporting them.

              I always feel compelled to check for that possible logical grounding even if the person making the claim was unaware of it.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Where individual bias coincides with reality, serendipity takes the credit.

                Hence the value of peer-review.

                • True enough.

                  Another one of the things that people often don’t realise about science – at least from Popper’s point of view – is that it’s entirely irrelevant to its scientific status where a hypothesis comes from (flights of the imagination, drug-induced delirium, overweening prejudice or careful application of logic).

                  What matters is that it can be put to the test, technically at least, and potentially be found wanting.

                  Having said that, hypotheses that come from flights of fancy (or wild prejudice) are probably more susceptible to being quickly falsified than are hypotheses that emerge from a bit of careful thinking inclusive of most of the known facts of the matter (i.e., that come from a good theory).

                  So any old speculation, so long as it’s at least technically testable, might be called scientific – but that doesn’t mean that it’s necessarily worth bothering going to the trouble of testing it (then again, you never know :-)).

    • marty mars 12.3

      “which is families that bring new babies into the world, only for them to not be taken care of, resulting in CYFs taking them from the families.”

      … taking them from the families and in many cases making their lives an even worse living hell from that point on until they end up in the justice system where they are abused further at which point they get delegated to serco to help train them for pay per view fighting – which to be fair does generate a little profit for the private provider and provides endless pontificating pleasure for the handwringing politicians and their supportive lapdogs who put them into the meatgrinder in the first place.

    • Chris 12.4

      But it’s the so-called “breeding” that nactoids want stopped so there’s no cost to the state of either taking kids into care or increased benefit payments. It also feeds into its vote-gathering machine that runs on the hatred of the poor, this probably being the far greater reason for all this than anything else.


    • RedBaronCV 12.5

      Is John Key that rude about his mother?

  13. stever 13

    Doing one of those substitution one phrase with another tests…would *this* alarm anyone?

    “State may try to stop some families having too much wealth

    Some families who have come to the attention of authorities may be stopped from having more wealth by the Government.

    Tolley acknowledged it would be a “huge step” for the state to start telling people that they could not have any more wealth, but said it was “a conversation that New Zealanders, perhaps, need to have”.

    Tolley did not rule out limiting or preventing some families from having any more wealth, but said she would wait to see what the panel recommended in December. …

  14. David Scott 14

    Taking the war on the poor to a whole new level with Eugenics. Even the suggestion of this should be reason enough to remove this government.

  15. Brutus Iscariot 15

    Pretty simplistic to say that the Government should just fix poverty rather than discouraging procreation, when one of the actual causes of poverty is having too many children.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 15.1


      Your intellectual and ethical poverty, on the other hand…what causes that?

    • Lanthanide 15.2

      The government should be concerned about the number of babies being born to these families. But such concern should be a minor part of a much more comprehensive and thorough effort to help these families, instead of the main attraction as we’re seeing here.

    • tracey 15.3

      IF Governments were interested in procreation rates they would willingly and actively make sure that programmes (which are readily available and effective) are implemented across ALL our schools. Yet they don’t. So they are neither interested in genuinely doing very much at all.

      The people supporting and advocating this contraception notion and medical implanting of IUD’s are strongly advocating vasectomies for the fathers of all these children?

      • KJT 15.3.1

        The most effective, proven, way of lowering birth rates is to give women more power, income, and reproductive choices.

        In other words, if right wingers were really concerned about women, or their children, they would be raising benefits, getting rid of zero hours Mc-Jobs, ensuring equal access to education, and more pay for the essential, but underpaid jobs, which are mostly done by women..

        • Draco T Bastard


          All that our present government seems interested in is controlling other peoples lives, punishing people for being poor.

  16. venezia 16

    I agree with Redbaroncv above…. The journalists need to do the research to answer the question “how many women have seven children during the time they are on the DPB?”
    Then we can have a public debate.

    • tracey 16.1

      this ^^^^^^^

      Afterall when we hear of appalling behaviour by a company director, we don’t tarnish ALL company directors with the same brush and force draconian measures on them (yeah DTB I kow we should… 😉 )

  17. NZSage 17

    Odd how the right wing seem to so often demonise and decry state intervention yet what could be more intrusive than controlling a persons biological choices?

    Once again the Natzs and some of their supporters show what a hateful, selfish and bigoted bunch they really are.

  18. Paul 18

    The National Party have set up a predictable diversion to knock the TPP off the headlines just as Groser is being taken to court to release the text.

  19. A.Ziffel 19

    This article could have been titled “The MSM & reproductive rights” since it was Michael Parkin that brought the subject up in the interview, not Tolley. Her response was very guarded.

    • Ergo Robertina 19.1

      Yeah, Parkin was aggressive in how he pushed this line in the interview. But it made Tolley seem oh so reasonable by slightly pushing back on it, and it helps the Govt by giving the contraceptive issue another run round the paddock, helping frame the wider CYF story as one of fecklessness.
      Works a treat as everyone has an opinion – most issues are increasingly too complex or boring for people, especially the press gallery, to understand.

  20. these proposals are colonisation in action and a continuation of the attacks upon tangata whenua – look at the numbers and tell me it ain’t so.

  21. linda 21

    Nugenics can’t. Be far away the nazi s did the in the 1930s only the udermen of. The right can reproduce all others are surplus to the balance sheet how long before we get extermination camps run by serco modern version of the death. Heads. We will soon have a nazi flag

  22. Puckish Rogue 22


    Surprisingly (and grudgingly I admit) Littles sounding reasonable

    Meanwhile, the Government’s getting an unusual defender on the issue, in the form of the Labour Party.

    Labour leader Andrew Little said more access to contraception is a good thing, and he doesn’t see the rest of the minister’s remarks as meaning the Government plans to take the scheme any further.

    “My own personal assessment of Anne Tolley is that she would be uncomfortable with that level of intervention.”

  23. Sabine 23

    I think it needs to be understood that the Domestic Purpose Benefit does not exist anymore. It has been made redunant under the current National led Government, with Mrs. Pullyer Bennefit being responsible for the Ministry of Social Regression.


    Changes to Domestic Purposes Benefit – Sole Parent
    If you are on the Domestic Purposes Benefit – Sole Parent, you need to know about changes being made to your benefit from 15 October 2012.

    Work obligations – ‘Being Available for Work’
    There are changes to when you are expected to actively seek suitable part-time or full-time work.
    People whose youngest child is aged between five and 13 years are now expected to look for part-time work of at least 15 hours a week, and accept any suitable job.

    People whose youngest child is 14 or older, or have no children, are expected to look for full-time work of at least 30 hours a week, and accept any suitable job.

    You will need to be available and looking for work, and accept any offers of suitable employment. You may also need to prepare a CV, attend a programme to improve your skills, or do other job related training.

    You need to be able to show us that you are actively seeking work or your benefit may be affected.

    Work preparation obligations – ‘Getting Ready for Work’

    If your youngest child is aged under five you will need to take practical steps to get ready for work.
    What you are asked to do will depend on what will best help you get a job. It might be preparing a CV, attending a programme to improve your skills, or doing other job related training.
    You need to be able to show us that you are making an effort to get ready for work or your benefit may be affected.

    Looking for work

    You may be eligible for assistance with the cost of childcare while you are working, attending training or some other activity that will help you move into work.
    The Childcare Subsidy is for preschool children and the OSCAR (Out of School Care and Recreation) Subsidy is for before and after school care and holiday programmes for children aged five – 13 years.
    For more information read Help with Childcare Costs

    Having another child while on a benefit
    From 15 October 2012 if you are on a benefit and have another child, once that child turns one you may have a change in obligations. These changes are consistent with the one year of parental leave that people in work receive.
    What this means
    Once your new child turn
    s one you may have new obligations depending on the age of your next youngest child. If your next youngest child is:
    under five, you will be expected to continue to take practical steps to get ready for work
    five – 13, you will be expected to be available for part-time work of at least 15 hours a week, and accept any suitable job
    14 or older, you will be expected to be available for full-time work of at least 30 hours a week, and accept any suitable job.
    For more information read:


    • RedBaronCV 23.1

      Where’s the matching policy,
      “If you are a non caregiving parent of a child over three when that child turns three you are required to care for them half time to facilitate the return of the primary caregiver to work or face a financial penalty that will lower your take home wage to the equivalent of the unemployment benefit plus 10%”

  24. Draco T Bastard 24

    Dimpost names it accurately: Clickbait government

    This government would never actually carry out the daunting legal and policy work required to implement mandatory contraception for beneficiaries, but they sure do like floating the idea whenever there’s a dip in the polls, to outraged cries from liberal pundits and roars of approval from the talkback radio moronocracy.

    Thing is, I’m pretty sure that National would do all the legislation and will do as soon as they think that no one’s watching.

  25. Mike Steinberg 25

    Coercion is one thing, but family planning and contraception has long been seen as a way to help women out of poverty.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 25.1

      If the National Party was all about empowering women we likely wouldn’t be having this discussion.

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  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
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    1 week ago
  • Enlightenment when?
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    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    1 week ago
  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
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    1 week ago
  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
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    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
    1 week ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
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    1 week ago
  • GFC vs Covid-19
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    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Left Behind.
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    1 week ago
  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
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    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Abortion law reform a win for women
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Why New Zealand needs to continue decisive action to contain coronavirus
    Michael Baker, University of Otago and Nick Wilson, University of Otago With some of the toughest border restrictions and a newly-announced NZ$500 million boost to health services, New Zealand is among a small number of countries with a strategy to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. New Zealand is also fortunate in ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • When a virus goes viral: pros and cons to the coronavirus spread on social media
    Axel Bruns, Queensland University of Technology; Daniel Angus, Queensland University of Technology; Timothy Graham, Queensland University of Technology, and Tobias R. Keller, Queensland University of Technology News and views about coronavirus has spread via social media in a way that no health emergency has done before. Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • How to survive 14 days of self-isolation
    So you’ve recently returned from overseas, come into contact with someone who tested positive, got a bit of a dry cough yourself or perhaps just want to self isolate for 14 days to avoid other people who might have COVID-19. Here are a few tips and tricks to help get ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Abortion Legislation Bill passes third reading
    Some fave speeches:     ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    2 weeks ago
  • Why Leadership Matters – More Than Anything.
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    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #11, 2020
    2 weeks ago
  • 68-51
    The Abortion Legislation Bill has just passed its third reading, 68-51. NZ First MPs bailed because their referendum amendment didn't pass, but there were plenty of MPs to provide a majority without them. The bill is a long way from perfect - most significantly, it subjects pregnant people who need ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The ‘herd immunity’ route to fighting coronavirus is unethical and potentially dangerous
    As most of the world tries to suppress the coronavirus spread, some countries are going it alone – trying to manage the pandemic through so-called “herd immunity”. Herd immunity means letting a large number of people catch a disease, and hence develop immunity to it, to stop the virus spreading. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Eight new COVID-19 cases today. It’s no surprise when you look at some numbers
    So, as I sit at home with a very, very slight headache (i.e. not at work when I would otherwise be so), the now familiar figure of Ashley Bloomfield reports eight new confirmed cases of COVID-19  including two in Waikato. A surprise, given that we had just twelve yesterday? No. ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • The WINZ Paradox versus the new COVID-19 Reality: Get real people, seriously…
    Many who advocated for, and voted for, the current Coalition – particularly those who voted Labour and the Green Party – expected to see a sea change in the reality of social services. A real, deep change of attitude, approach of process through which the system negotiates the difficult and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • The Air New Zealand bailout
    Stuff reports that the government is going to have to throw $2 - 3 billion at Air new Zealand to get it through the pandemic. Good. While international routes are basicly closed, Air New Zealand is a strategic asset which is vital to our tourism industry, not to mentioning airfreight. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why NZ’s tough coronavirus travel rules are crucial to protecting lives at home and across the Pac...
    New Zealand’s border restrictions will come with significant job and business losses in the tourism sector, both at home and in the Pacific. But the new travel rules are absolutely necessary to protect the health of New Zealanders and people right across Pacific Islands, because New Zealand is a gateway ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The tiniest of teeth
    Back in early 2018, as a shoddy legal tactic to try and avoid the prisoner voting ban being formally declared inconsistent with the BORA by the Supreme Court, Justice Minister Andrew Little floated the idea of greater legal protection for human rights. When the Supreme Court case didn't go the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • One simple, common factor to success against COVID-19
    Professor Philip Hill and Associate Professor James Ussher Most infectious diseases have an Achilles heel, the secret is to find it. The question is if we don’t have a drug or a vaccine for COVID-19, is there something else we can do to beat it? Some people estimate that, without ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • National should isolate Simon Bridges
    The Coalition Governments $12.1 billion economic package to help combat the financial effects of COVID-19 was generally well received across the board, even amongst many business leaders who would normally be critical of a Labour led Government.However there was one glaringly obvious exception, Simon Bridges. The so-called leader of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How testing for Covid-19 works
    With confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand up to 12, many influential people are writing open letters and opinion pieces and doing press conferences asking why we aren’t pulling out all the stops and testing thousands of people a day like they are in South Korea. The thing is, ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 weeks ago
  • The COVID-19 package and the limits of capitalism
    by Daphna Whitmore The willingness to put human life before business shows that sometimes capitalism is capable of suspending its relentless drive for profit. For a short time it can behave differently. Flatten the curve is the public health message since COVID-19 suddenly overwhelmed the hospital system in northern Italy. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: COVID-19 Alert Level 4
    The COVID-19 situation in New Zealand is moving fast - and to avoid what we've seen overseas - the Government's response must be to move fast too. We're committed to keeping New Zealanders safe and well-informed every step of the way. ...
    2 days ago
  • SPEECH: Green Party Co-leader James Shaw – Ministerial statement on State of National Emergency an...
    Thank you, Mr. Speaker.  The scale of what we face right now is unlike anything we have ever seen before. Overcoming it is our common purpose. ...
    5 days ago
  • Winston Peters urging New Zealanders overseas to stay put
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging New Zealanders overseas to stay where they are amid the COVID-19 pandemic. "We are reaching a point where the best option for most New Zealanders offshore is to shelter in place, by preparing to safely stay where they are.” "This includes following the instructions ...
    6 days ago
  • New Zealanders overseas encouraged to shelter in place
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging the tens of thousands of New Zealanders travelling overseas to consider sheltering in place, in light of COVID-19.  “Since 18 March, we have been warning New Zealanders offshore that the window for flying ...
    6 days ago
  • Ground-breaking abortion law passes, giving NZers compassionate healthcare
    Ground-breaking law has passed that will decriminalise abortion and ensure women and pregnant people seeking abortions have compassionate healthcare. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Package supports Kiwis to put collective health first
    The Green Party says that the measures announced by the Government today will help families and businesses to prioritise our collective health and wellbeing in the response to COVID-19. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters: COVID-19 rescue package ‘more significant’ than any worldwide
    As New Zealanders brace for a global downturn due to Covid-19, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says his Coalition Government’s rescue package "more significant" than any other he's seen around the world. The Coalition is to reveal a multi-billion-dollar stimulus plan on Tuesday afternoon designed to cushion the economic blow ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Our response to COVID-19
    We know some people are feeling anxious about COVID-19. While the situation is serious, New Zealand has a world-class health system and we’re well-prepared to keep New Zealanders safe. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Demerit Points System’ will address youth crime
    Darroch Ball MP, Spokesperson for Law and Order A New Zealand First member’s bill drawn from the ballot today seeks to overhaul the youth justice system by instigating a system of demerit points for offences committed by young offenders. “The ‘Youth Justice Demerit Point System’ will put an end to ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Investment in kingfish farming
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund is investing $6 million in a land-based aquaculture pilot to see whether yellowtail kingfish can be commercially farmed in Northland, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. A recirculating land-based aquaculture system will be built and operated ...
    3 weeks ago
  • 1BT grants for Northland planting
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Forestry Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced two One Billion Trees programme grants of more than $1.18 million to help hapu and iwi in Northland restore whenua and moana. “Many communities around Aotearoa have benefited from One Billion Trees funding since the programme was launched ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand reaffirms support for Flight MH17 judicial process
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    3 weeks ago
  • PGF investment in green hydrogen
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister The Government is investing $19.9 million through the Provincial Growth Fund in a game-changing hydrogen energy facility in South Taranaki, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The development of alternative energy initiatives like this one is vital for the Taranaki region’s economy. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Coronavirus support for Pacific
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Minister for Foreign Affairs Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand is partnering with countries in the Pacific to ensure they are prepared for, and able to respond to the global threat of Coronavirus (COVID-19). “There are currently no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Green Party passes landmark law to ensure deaf and disabled voices heard equally in democracy
    Chlöe Swarbrick's Members Bill to support disabled general election candidates has passed into law. ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has today announced details of the Government’s support package to keep key air freight moving and ensure New Zealanders retain access to essential goods during the four-week level 4 lockdown. “The Government is working with airlines and air freight operators to ensure New Zealand’s key ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
    New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 – Restrict New Zealand to move up to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, in 48 hours Two-staged approach to give people and businesses time to prepare  Level 3, from tomorrow Non-essential businesses must close All events and gatherings must be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
    Good afternoon  The Cabinet met this morning to discuss our next actions in the fight against COVID-19.  Like the rest of the world, we are facing the potential for devastating impacts from this virus. But, through decisive action, and through working together, do we have a small window to get ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
    The Government is announcing significant further support for the economy, workers and businesses as the country unites to prepare for Alert Level 4 in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet today agreed to remove the cap on the Government’s wage subsidy scheme, which will inject a further $4 billion into the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
    The Government is backing the Reserve Bank’s latest action to support the economy by reducing longer-term interest rates, meaning lower costs for businesses and mortgage holders, and a lower currency to help our exporters. The Minister of Finance has signed a memorandum of understanding and a letter of indemnity with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
    The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks.   “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to make sure businesses can work together in ways that will allow them to provide ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
    The New Zealand Government has temporarily closed its High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados and its Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Due to the increasing scarcity of air links in and out of Bridgetown and Yangon, and the pressure COVID-19 is placing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
    Associate Health and Whānau Ora Minister Peeni Henare has today announced the Government’s plan to support Māori communities and businesses in the face of COVID-19. “Our Government’s $12.1 billion economic package will help many Māori whānau, workers and businesses, whether it’s through wage subsidies, income support and worker redeployment, or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
    The Government and the hospitality industry have worked together to produce guidelines to assist with managing and reducing transmission of COVID-19, Health Minister David Clark announced today.  The guidelines developed between the Government, Hospitality New Zealand and SkyCity Entertainment Group, set out how the new restrictions on physical distancing and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
    Four stage Alert System for COVID-19 announced New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2 – Reduce Contact New Zealanders over 70 and those with certain medical conditions told to stay at home as much as they can to reduce risk of contact with the virus Workplaces to implement ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PM Address – Covid-19 Update
    Kia ora koutou katoa I’m speaking directly to all New Zealanders today to give you as much certainty and clarity as we can as we fight Covid-19. Over the past few weeks, the world has changed. And it has changed very quickly. In February it would have seemed unimaginable to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ and Singapore commit to keeping supply and trade links open, including on essential goods and med...
    New Zealand and Singapore have jointly committed to keep supply chains open and to remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the commitment. “This is an important collective response, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Joint Ministerial Statement by Singapore and New Zealand -Covid-19 situation
    JOINT MINISTERIAL STATEMENT BY SINGAPORE AND NEW ZEALAND AFFIRMING COMMITMENT TO ENSURING SUPPLY CHAIN CONNECTIVITY AMIDST THE COVID-19 SITUATION  The COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis.  As part of our collective response to combat COVID-19, Singapore and New Zealand are committed to maintaining open and connected supply chains. We ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Transit between Australia and New Zealand
    Travel restrictions, closing our border to almost all travelers came into force from 23:59 on Thursday 19 March 2020 (NZDT).  All airlines were informed of these restrictions before they came into force. Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says “The transit of passengers between Australia and New Zealand has been agreed upon and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $100 million to redeploy workers
    The Government has allocated $100 million to help redeploy workers affected by the economic impact of COVID-19, with the hard-hit region of Gisborne-Tairāwhiti to be the first helped, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford, Forestry and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Employment Minister Willie Jackson announced today. Phil Twyford ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • More support for wood processing
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is ramping up support for Tairāwhiti’s wood processing sector to bolster the region’s economy at a time of heightened uncertainty, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Following earlier announcements today of a regional support package for Tairāwhiti, Minister Jones has also announced a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt steps in to protect Air New Zealand
    The Coalition Government has stepped in to protect Air New Zealand with a significant financial deal that protects essential routes and allows the company to keep operating. The Government and Air New Zealand have agreed a debt funding agreement through commercial 24-month loan facilities of up to $900 million*. The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Stronger border measures to protect NZers from COVID-19
    The Government has taken further measures to protect New Zealanders from the COVID-19 virus, effectively stopping all people from boarding a plane to New Zealand from 11:59pm today, except for returning New Zealanders, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today.  New Zealanders’ partners, legal guardians or any dependent children travelling with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Action on indoor gatherings and events to protect public health
    The Government has reinforced its commitment to protecting the health of New Zealanders from COVID-19 through the cancellation of indoor events with more than 100 people.  “Protecting the health of New Zealanders is our number one priority, and that means we need to reduce the risks associated with large gatherings,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealanders advised not to travel overseas
    The New Zealand Government is advising New Zealanders not to travel overseas due to COVID-19, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced. “We are raising our travel advice to the highest level: do not travel,” Mr Peters said. “This is the first time the New Zealand Government has advised New Zealanders ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt announces aviation relief package
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today outlined the first tranche of the $600 million aviation sector relief package announced earlier this week as part of the Government’s $12.1 billion COVID-19 economic response. The initial part of the aviation package aims to secure the operators of New Zealand’s aviation security system, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago

  • ICYMI Business: Chorus and Stride hopeful
    ASB sees 6 percent GDP fall in 2020; Chorus, King Salmon and Stride reassure their profits are still on track; Augusta withdraws fund on rent relief fears; US stocks slide again; US jobs data looms ...
    20 mins ago
  • The Bulletin: When are we getting out of lockdown?
    Good morning and welcome to The Bulletin. In today’s edition: Conditions for leaving lockdown explored, nation’s first death from Covid-19 reported, and Australian govt continues to discriminate against NZers.When will the Covid-19 lockdown across New Zealand end? Short answer – when it’s actually safe to do so. Officially, the current state ...
    The SpinoffBy Alex Braae
    37 mins ago
  • Covid-19 live updates, March 30: Australia bans gatherings of more than two as it nears 4,000 cases
    For all The Spinoff’s latest coverage of Covid-19 see here. Read Siouxsie Wiles’s work hereNew Zealand is currently in alert level four. The country is shut down, apart from essential services. For updated official government advice, see here.The Spinoff’s coverage of the Covid-19 outbreak is funded by The Spinoff Members. To support this work, join The ...
    The SpinoffBy The Spinoff
    56 mins ago
  • Coronavirus: PM backs families battling to keep seniors in their bubble
    People over 70 and those with underlying health conditions faced the lockdown four days before the rest of the country - but some of the elderly still aren't taking any notice. ...
    56 mins ago
  • A photo essay on the one thing to keep you sane in the lockdown: bookshelves
    Steve Braunias presents a photo essay of the one thing that New Zealanders are holding close to their hearts during the Lockdown: their bookshelves. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's bookcase at Premier House in Wellington. The photograph which she posted this weekend on her Instagram page reveals two novels by Elizabeth ...
    1 hour ago
  • Glimmer of hope for Lake Alice victims
    Police start “initial” investigation into abuse at a notorious psychiatric hospital. David Williams reports The Government has missed a 90-day deadline for responding to a United Nations committee over torture at Lake Alice’s child and adolescent unit in the 1970s. However, in a move that might represent a glimmer of ...
    2 hours ago
  • Emma Espiner: Sunday at Countdown
    Emma Espiner makes a slow and deliberate trip to the supermarket yesterday, where she finds we are approaching social distancing in a very New Zealand way  It took me three attempts to go to the supermarket. Two days ago I saw the cheerless conga line snaking around the car park ...
    2 hours ago
  • Society’s ‘invisible bonds’ come into the light
    Dr Neal Curtis looks at all the points of implicit trust within society, and how Covid-19 is revealing how important this trust is As I stood in the queue to get into our local supermarket it was encouraging to see how carefully people were engaging in social distancing to minimise ...
    2 hours ago
  • Practise, practise, practise: The Black Fern and the law
    From growing up on the remote East Cape to becoming a Black Fern and a lawyer, Ruahei Demant wants to show young Māori that anything is possible. In the long run, Ruahei Demant wants to be a sports lawyer. But in the short term, the Black Ferns first-five is juggling her ...
    2 hours ago
  • Like being randomly pricked with a pin … and worse
    Having toughed it out alone with Covid-19 and survived, one Kiwi man learned the hard way how self-isolation really can save lives, writes Jill Herron Choosing to self-isolate early with only Sophie the spaniel as company led to a lonesome, rough ride through Covid-19 for a Christchurch asthmatic – but ...
    2 hours ago
  • Love in the times of Covid-19
    As we begin what could become a long period of self-isolation, we encounter a dilemma. On the one hand, epidemiological research and recent global events show us the dangers of not responding swiftly to Covid-19. With community spread now within our shores, it is critical that we follow government orders ...
    2 hours ago
  • The fears of community health and care workers
    Community health and care workers talk of their fear of infection  -  for themselves, their vulnerable clients and New Zealand Over the last few days, Newsroom has written several articles about the fact that thousands of home and community health care workers, who care for elderly, disabled and sick people, have ...
    2 hours ago
  • Covid-19: Petitions launched demanding ‘hazard pay’ for essential workers
    Calls are growing for extra payment for those who continue to head out to work every day, including many on very low wages.The Spinoff’s coverage of the Covid-19 outbreak is funded by The Spinoff Members. To support this work, join The Spinoff Members here.Two petitions have been circulating over the weekend ...
    The SpinoffBy Toby Manhire
    3 hours ago
  • History, hope, and Covid-19
    Covid-19 will transform society, just as the plague and smallpox transformed nations centuries ago. This time, however, we have something they didn’t, writes historian Ayelet Zoran-Rosen.Throughout history, epidemics and pandemics have been a threat to people and states. They strike societies with little or no notice, upend their social and ...
    The SpinoffBy Ayelet Zoran-Rosen
    3 hours ago
  • Christchurch, coronavirus and the ‘new normal’
    The Covid-19 epidemic is only the second time New Zealand has entered a state of national emergency. Newsroom’s Sam Sachdeva had first-hand experience of the first  - the devastating Christchurch earthquakes - and tries to make sense of how the two compare. There is so much that is new about New ...
    3 hours ago
  • The virus as a Vector for power use switch
    In another of his interviews with key industry CEOs on their response to the Covid-19 crisis, Rod Oram talks with Simon Mackenzie of lines company Vector, who expects permanent changes in where and why people consume electricity even once the lockdown ends At mid-afternoon on Wednesday, nine hours before New ...
    3 hours ago
  • Facebook hires AAP for NZ fact-checking
    In the lead-up to the general election, Facebook has launched a fact-checking service for New Zealand and the Pacific, Marc Daalder reports Facebook has contracted the Australian Associated Press' fact-checking division to serve as a certified agency to review content pertaining to New Zealand and the Pacific and rate its ...
    3 hours ago
  • Govt’s ComCom Covid-19 directions illegal and irrational
    The Consumers' Union of Aotearoa has issued a challenge against Kris Faafoi's ministerial press statement which instructed the Commerce Commission to relax its standards for supermarkets and telecommunications companies[*]. ...
    3 hours ago
  • Public gatherings restricted to two people and all foreign investment proposals scrutinised, in new ...
    Source: The Conversation (Au and NZ) – By Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra No more than two people are to gather together in public spaces, and playgrounds will be closed in the latest restrictions in the coronavirus crisis. Meanwhile the government will now scrutinise all foreign investment proposals ...
    Evening ReportBy The Conversation
    7 hours ago
  • Give people and businesses money now they can pay back later (if and when they can)
    Source: The Conversation (Au and NZ) – By Linda Botterill, Professor in Australian Politics, University of Canberra The novel coronavirus sees Australia facing major unprecedented health and economic crises. The key to preventing a downward spiral of the economy is to avoid a collapse in incomes of newly laid-off workers ...
    Evening ReportBy The Conversation
    9 hours ago
  • How Ardern’s coronavirus kindness theme can become contagious
    The South African ‘Don’t Panic Buy’ jingle. Video: ENCA/PickNSave PACIFIC PANDEMIC DIARY: By David Robie, self-isolating in Auckland under New Zealand’s Covid-19 lockdown as part of a new Pacific Media Watch series. A South African celebrity jingle that has gone viral at the end of this week could easily ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    11 hours ago
  • Government says Australia’s coronavirus curve may be flattening
    Source: The Conversation (Au and NZ) – By Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra The federal government says there are signs the coronavirus curve may be flattening in Australia. Scott Morrison told a Sunday news conference the rate of increase in cases had fallen to about 13-15% a day ...
    Evening ReportBy The Conversation
    14 hours ago
  • Broadband and data usage surges as New Zealanders reach out
    Whether to connect with friends and colleagues, catch up on news, or stave off the boredom with bingeable TV, we’ve all been on our devices a lot more than normal.Vodafone has released a summary of its traffic stats for the past six days, which compares phone calls, broadband, and mobile ...
    The SpinoffBy Michael Andrew
    15 hours ago
  • Rushed Vaping Bill During Covid-19, Grossly Unfair
    New Zealand vaping representatives have joined forces to condemn the Government continuing with its plan to rush legislation through Parliament to regulate vaping despite the Covid-19 lockdown. The Vaping Trade Association of New Zealand (VTANZ), ...
    15 hours ago
  • Locked down and locked out in Australia
    Celebrated Kiwi author and expat Ian Brodie adds his voice to pleas for the Australian government to relax welfare rules and help more than half a million vulnerable New Zealanders, writes Jill Herron. Brothers in arms, we are not. That’s the call from award-winning Kiwi author, photographer and film tourism ...
    16 hours ago
  • Review: Netflix’s addictive Tiger King will leave you feeling grubby for watching
    The new true crime documentary sensation shares many of the flaws of its own subject, writes Sam Brooks.Joe Exotic, the man at the centre of Netflix’s new documentary series Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness, is a star. There’s an unnerving charisma that burns through the tattooed eyeliner, the sickly ...
    The SpinoffBy Sam Brooks
    16 hours ago
  • NZ lockdown – Day 4: First death in New Zealand from coronavirus
    By RNZ News New Zealand’s Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern have confirmed the country’s first death from the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. Dr Bloomfield said New Zealand had its first death today, after a woman who was initially diagnosed with influenza died. The woman ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    16 hours ago
  • Covid-19 in NZ – Sunday’s numbers charted
    How is Covid-19 spreading within the country? Newsroom is collating information as it's available to paint a picture of what's happening. There were 63 new cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, down from the previous day's 83 new cases. Details of how many tests have been completed are now being released ...
    17 hours ago
  • PNG’s Health Minister Jelta Wong ‘sidelines’ Kramer in virus briefings
    Papua New Guinea will have only one press release in the afternoons at 4:00pm daily to give updates on the Covid–19 in the country in a reshuffle of information briefings. Health Minister Jelta Wong announced this when visited the office of the PNG Nurses Association accompanied by his department’s ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    17 hours ago
  • First Covid-19 death in New Zealand
    New Zealand has had its first death linked to Covid-19. The patient, a woman in her 70s on the West Coast, was admitted to hospital with what was thought to be influenza complicated by underlying health conditions. She was later diagnosed with Covid-19. The woman's family has asked for privacy ...
    18 hours ago
  • President Lú-Olo declares Timor-Leste state of emergency over coronavirus
    Pacific Media Watch The President of Timor-Leste, Francisco Guterres Lú-Olo, has declared a state of emergency to enable the government to address the global Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. The state of emergency started last night at midnight and it will run until the night of April 26. Timor-Leste’s National Parliament ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    18 hours ago
  • Cut Traffic Speeds To Reduce Pressure On Hospitals, Say Cycling Advocates
    It’s time to lower traffic speeds to reduce crashes and free up hospital beds, say cycling advocates. "This will reduce harm and ease the burden on our health workers and emergency services," says Patrick Morgan from Cycling Action Network. ...
    18 hours ago
  • Pacific coronavirus: French Polynesia Covid-19 tally rises to 34
    By RNZ Pacific The number of people testing positive for Covid-19 in French Polynesia has risen by four to 34. The update from the government said the hospitalisation rate is unchanged with one person in care. Last night a curfew was declared for the first time, forcing residents across ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    19 hours ago
  • Ohura Medieval Market Day, and the fight to keep a small town standing
    It’s a town where people often feel the rest of the country has given up on them, in the middle of a region where every place feels isolated. So how did Ohura become an unlikely centre of Medieval Combat sports in New Zealand? Alex Braae spent three days there finding ...
    The SpinoffBy Alex Braae
    20 hours ago
  • Coronavirus – analysing the data makes you think we could do with more of it
    If you want to understand some of the thinking behind the policy response to the spread of coronavirus, you might want to read the paper from the Imperial College COVID-19 Response Team, which is credited with accelerating the introduction of the current lockdown measures in the UK. The paper builds ...
    Point of OrderBy xtrdnry
    20 hours ago
  • The Pink Jumpsuit: An essay about the bubbles we live in
    ‘It seems like someone else’s dream of my past.’ For Emma Neale, the painting ‘Wanderlust’ by Dunedin artist Sharon Singer stirs memories of her childhood, and new understandings of guilt and forgiveness.There were gifts from my father when he came home from overseas trips. Love offerings; a bit like those ...
    The SpinoffBy Emma Neale
    21 hours ago
  • Māori Party delay launch to fight Covid-19
    The Māori Party is delaying the launch of its new-look party to fight Covid-19 in Māori communities. ...
    21 hours ago
  • Resuscitating a virus-ravaged economy – the answer lies in the soil and the exports it generates
    Westpac is forecasting 200,000 jobs will be lost in NZ as a result of the response to the coronavirus pandemic.  Chief economist Dominick Stephens estimates economic activity during the four week lock-down would decline by a third, despite the government and the Reserve Bank having “done a lot to calm ...
    Point of OrderBy tutere44
    22 hours ago
  • Renée, the Lockdown Letters #3: Help yourself to my rhubarb
    In our new series The Lockdown Letters, some of New Zealand’s best writers tell us what they’ve been up to in the days of Covid-19 alert level four. Today, Ōtaki author Renée.I have a wild tomato flopping all over the path down the back of the veg garden. I picked a ...
    The SpinoffBy Renée
    22 hours ago
  • Covid-19 live updates, March 29
    For all The Spinoff’s latest coverage of Covid-19 see here. Read Siouxsie Wiles’s work here. New Zealand is currently in alert level four. The country is shut down, apart from essential services. For updated official government advice, see here. The Spinoff’s coverage of the Covid-19 outbreak is funded by The Spinoff Members. To support this ...
    The SpinoffBy Toby Manhire
    1 day ago
  • Covid-19 scams: Here’s what you need to look out for
    Online criminals have been making the most of Covid-19 by preying on people’s fear and doubt. Here are some of the calling cards of these con artists.With most New Zealanders tucked up at home, digital devices are proving to be critical tools for staying connected with each other, making good ...
    The SpinoffBy Michael Andrew
    1 day ago
  • A visit to the supermarket
    Author and illustrator Sarah Laing draws a rite of passage in The Lockdown. Reprinted with the permission of the author from  Let Me Be Frank, Sarah Laing's blog devoted to "Reading. Writing. Parenting. Angsting." Let Me Be Frank is also the ...
    1 day ago
  • Life on paws: How to deal with your pets during lockdown
    As New Zealand adjusts to a month of lockdown, many pet owners have questions about their furry friends. Alex Casey had a chat with the SPCA – here’s what she learned. AC: My cat had a disgusting abscess on his tail and now has to get his stitches out. ...
    The SpinoffBy Alex Casey
    1 day ago
  • No shops, no launches – but the NZ book scene is finding new ways to reach people under lockdown
    Books editor Catherine Woulfe takes an energising walk around the lockdown block of New Zealand books. When the bubbles settled over us they settled over the books too. Libraries were the first to shut down, then the physical bookstores and finally, the hammer blow: online sales and indeed any notion of ...
    The SpinoffBy The Spinoff Review of Books
    1 day ago
  • Fiji: A paradise under pandemic rules
    Convincing its citizens to take lockdown seriously will be a major challenge for Fiji’s government, writes Mandy De Vries. My husband, Howie, and I are lucky enough to live on the beautiful Coral Coast in Fiji. We started a tourism operation here two years ago which was, until recently, booming. ...
    1 day ago
  • We’re better placed now than GFC or 1987
    New Zealand’s businesses and government are far better prepared for the rapidly escalating global health and economic crisis than they were for the Global Financial Crisis in 2008-09 or the stock market crash in 1987, says Rob Campbell, one of the country’s most experienced corporate leaders. “Executive teams and boards ...
    1 day ago
  • Gavin Ellis: Time for adversity journalism
    Journalism commentator and former editor Gavin Ellis says media organisations play a vital role in keeping the community informed and, if possible, safe. They also have a crucial part to play in the maintenance of public order and morale, ­ just as they did in the 1940s. With the country in ...
    1 day ago
  • We’ve been forgotten: midwife
    The country has millions of protective gowns, gloves and eyewear – midwives ask: Where are they? David Williams reports Two days into a national lockdown some midwives didn’t have any protective equipment, adding to concerns about safeguards for frontline health workers. On Friday, announcements were made by the Health Ministry ...
    1 day ago
  • What lockdown could do for your business idea
    Covid-19 lockdown provides valuable time for planning a new business, as Dr Mary-Ellen Gordon explains You have a great idea for a business. You’ve been working to get it up and going. Then, just as you were starting to gain traction, the entire country and much of the rest of ...
    1 day ago
  • Covid-19: A catch-22 for our most vulnerable
    Low-income workers whose jobs have disappeared thanks to Covid-19 will increasingly need to access benefit income. When this happens, however, they lose a tax credit for their children. As a direct result of the Covid-19 crisis, the Government has improved its rescue policies for business. We now need to see urgent ...
    1 day ago
  • First boredom, then fear
    The strange energy of preparing for level four is over, now the dystopian reality has kicked in. Danyl Mclauchlan writes an essay about home life during a ‘cosy catastrophe’.We start by setting up our home workspaces, covering the kitchen table with such a thick mass of black cables and USB ...
    The SpinoffBy Danyl Mclauchlan
    1 day ago
  • All Australians will be able to access telehealth under new $1.1 billion coronavirus program
    Source: The Conversation (Au and NZ) – By Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra Scott Morrison will unvieil on Sunday a $1.1 billion set of measures to make Medicare telehealth services generally available during the coronavirus pandemic and to support mental health, domestic violence and community services. The “Medicare ...
    Evening ReportBy The Conversation
    1 day ago
  • Covid-19 in NZ – Saturday’s numbers charted
    How is Covid-19 spreading within the country? Newsroom is collating information as it's available to paint a picture of what's happening. There were 83 new cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, down from the previous day's 85 new cases. Details of how many tests have been completed are now bing released ...
    1 day ago
  • NZ lockdown – Day 3: PM Ardern chats with followers on Facebook
    By RNZ News New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern spoke to her followers on Facebook today from her office in Premier House. Her chat lasted about 15 minutes and garnered more than 310,000 views. She discussed wage subsidies for full-time and part-time workers, personal protection equipment (PPE) supplies for ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    1 day ago
  • Effective coronavirus messages and fake news: Can we do better?
    COMMENTARY: By Bob Howarth (self-isolating in Australia after his latest trip to Timor-Leste) After days of web surfing for Covid-19 coronavirus news around the Asia-Pacific, two areas that appear to need improving in some countries are official communication and fact checking. So here’s my two cents, rupiah, kina or ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    2 days ago
  • The best binges on NEON for these extraordinary times
    Whether it’s a robot uprising, a woman catfishing into the publishing world or a bunch of lovestruck islanders, NEON has you covered. Here’s what we’re bingeing on NEON for the foreseeable future.WestworldJust in time for lockdown, there’s a buzz-worthy show with endless discussion points coming out on a weekly basis. ...
    The SpinoffBy The Spinoff
    2 days ago
  • Covid-19: Who really needs to be wearing protective gear?
    There’s been a lot of talk about PPE of late – do we have enough, is it getting to the right people, and who exactly are the right people, anyway? Here’s the latest official advice.The Ministry of Health has now circulated updated advice on the appropriate use of PPE (personal ...
    The SpinoffBy Leonie Hayden
    2 days ago
  • The face of the Covid-19 response: Who is Ashley Bloomfield?
    A month ago, not many had heard of Ashley Bloomfield. But as the Covid-19 response has ramped up, the director-general of health has become a calm, reassuring presence in a time of uncertainty and fear. Rachel Thomas profiles him, in a piece first published on RNZ.Today, Saturday, director-general of health ...
    The SpinoffBy Rachel Thomas
    2 days ago
  • To fish or not to fish – that is the question
    Jim Kayes tests the waters of social media to see how people are coping with being told to avoid their favourite pastime. “There is something ridiculously exhilarating about catching a fish. The thrill might have faded for the salty angler, but for this rookie, the novice still snagging fish hooks ...
    2 days ago
  • New PPE plan leaves community care workers without masks
    The Government yesterday reassured us there are plenty of masks for front line staff dealing with the public. Yet it seems home care workers, who provide up-close personal care for tens of thousands of people every day, won’t be given them. Yesterday two documents hit my inbox. One was a ...
    2 days ago
  • Don’t fret, folks – Hone’s sweet with the mayor so long as he sets up checkpoints and doesn’...
    Hobson’s Choice spokesman Don Brash (a former leader of the National and ACT Parties) is not alone in challenging the justification for tribes claiming to have closed roads to protect their people against Covid. Deputy Prime Minister and New Zealand First leader Winston Peters – his remarks apparently ignored by ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    2 days ago
  • Manaaki Key For Getting Though COVID-19
    Preliminary results from a survey investigating how well-equipped Māori whānau in the South Island are to stay at home for extended periods show that the majority are prepared to manage their short-term needs, but have increasing anxiety about ...
    2 days ago
  • Parliamentary Monitoring And Reporting Is Critical In Dealing With COVID-19 Responses
    "The risk of fraud and corruption is compounded during crises like the COVID-19 pandemic. When quick decisions are necessary to move vast amounts of resources, bribery, fraud and corruption abound," says Suzanne Snively, Chair of Transparency International ...
    2 days ago
  • Pacific coronavirus: Guam still region’s hot spot with 51 plus cases
    By RNZ Pacific Guam remains the Pacific pandemic hot spot with the number of Covid-19 coronavirus cases climbing above 50. On Friday six people tested positive for the coronavirus, bringing the total to 51. Thirteen of the cases are currently in hospital. READ MORE: Al Jazeera live updates – ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    2 days ago
  • Outrage after Indonesian politicians get priority testing for Covid-19
    By Mong Palatino Many Indonesian internet users have expressed anger over the decision of the House of Representatives (DPR) to test its 575 members for Covid-19. Indonesia has a population of more than 260 million. As of today, the country has 913 Covid-19 positive cases with 87 deaths. But ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    2 days ago
  • Latest numbers: 83 new cases, two in ICU
    New Zealand has 78 new confirmed cases of Covid-19 and five probable cases, the Government has announced today, taking the total to 451. Civil Defence Emergency Management director Sarah Stuart-Black said 12 people are in hospital and two are in intensive care, including one on a ventilator. Twelve are in ...
    2 days ago
  • Covid-19: Total tops 450
    New Zealand has 78 new confirmed cases of Covid-19 and five probable cases, the Government has announced today, taking the total to 451. Civil Defence Emergency Management director Sarah Stuart-Black said 12 people are in hospital and two are in intensive care, including one on a ventilator. Twelve are in ...
    2 days ago
  • ‘We’re ready,’ says NCD chief Parkop with Port Moresby locked down
    By Michelle Steven in Port MoresbyPacific New Guinea’s National Capital City Covid-19 Task Force team is preparing ahead should there be a possible coronavirus case during the 14-day lockdown. NCD Governor Powes Parkop told a media conference that the capital city would be in total lockdown with no public ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    2 days ago
  • Automatic 3-month Visa Extension Granted For Every Migrant
    Leading immigration lawyer Aaron Martin assesses the impact of the announcement of the epidemic notice for migrants. Immigration New Zealand announced that the government epidemic management notice relating to immigration matters comes into effect on 2 ...
    2 days ago
  • Government rules magazines and community newspapers aren’t an essential service
    Just a tiny handful of print publications will continue through the lockdown, with only daily newspapers specifically identified as being able to continue. Duncan Greive spoke to publishers of magazines and community newspapers about the impact on them and their communities.Publishers of magazines and community newspapers are reeling, after a ...
    The SpinoffBy Duncan Greive
    2 days ago
  • Magazines and community papers aren’t an essential service, leaving some small towns and elderly w...
    Just a tiny handful of print publications will continue through the lockdown, with only daily newspapers specifically identified as being able to continue. Duncan Greive spoke to publishers of magazines and community newspapers about the impact on them and their communities.Publishers of magazines and community newspapers are reeling, after a ...
    The SpinoffBy Duncan Greive
    2 days ago
  • Coronavirus: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says no change in Australia’s stance to New Zealand...
    Jacinda Ardern has pleaded with the Australian Prime Minister to make an exception to the rule that bars many of the 650,000 New Zealanders there from receiving a benefit. ...
    2 days ago
  • Morgan Godfery, The Lockdown Letters #2: I’m never sleeping
    In our new series The Lockdown Letters, some of New Zealand’s best writers tell us what they’ve been up to in the days of Covid-19 alert level four. Today, political commentator and essayist Morgan Godfery.I’M TWEETING AT 2AM.The responsible part of my brain is sending sleep signals. Inconvenient yawns. The ...
    The SpinoffBy Morgan Godfery
    2 days ago
  • A review of Attraction, the road trip novel we need right now
    Take a vicarious roadie via Attraction, the novel by Ruby Porter that was longlisted for the country’s biggest fiction prize. Released last year, it’s now a slightly eerie snapshot of Aotearoa as we were. Attraction is a New Zealand road trip novel with a heavy dose of postcolonial guilt. Whitewashing, cultural ...
    The SpinoffBy Emma Gattey
    2 days ago
  • Iwi do their thing: helping those in need
    Iwi everywhere put support plans into action, focusing on their  kaumātua, writes Kayne Ngātokowhā Peters. Iwi are ramping up support services to assist their people in need following the closure of Ministry of Social Development offices and the move to online and phone assistance from Work and Income. Central North Island ...
    2 days ago