Nats’ attack on union hits High Court

Written By: - Date published: 9:46 am, May 14th, 2008 - 47 comments
Categories: election funding, national, workers' rights - Tags: ,

Today National will be explaining to the High Court why it wants the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union’s 50,000 members to be denied the chance to campaign for their work rights this election. I’m expecting that they will continue to claim they are only “testing the law” but given the EPMU’s record of showing National up for its attacks on Kiwi workers I doubt many will buy that excuse.

I would imagine that there will be a reserved decision on the case but I suspect that part of National’s plan is to inoculate the union movement’s campaigns by trying to imply they are sockpuppets for Labour.

Interestingly National’s sockpuppets, including the Sensible Sentencing Trust, will be taking their case against the EFA tomorrow. The Trust is not registered as a third party of course so this action is obviously not politically motivated.

I predicted at the start of this year that the right would try to get around the EFA and spend its vast campaign war-chest through a PR campaign of politically motivated legal actions. I guess I was right.

As an aside it should be noted that Bill English is doing the legwork on this. They obviously don’t want “Clean John” getting his brand dirty.

47 comments on “Nats’ attack on union hits High Court”

  1. Surely if Labour & its partners hadn’t created the EFA then National wouldn’t now be using it ?

  2. IrishBill 2

    In my opinion the Nats are misusing it. National is welcome to spend its campaign surplus on vexatious legal PR games if they want. Personally I think it will be counterproductive and I think the media will be very cynical about National’s motives.

  3. higherstandard 3

    IB

    Come off it – all and sundry slated this as unworkable poor legislation prior to it being passed in the house, to now attack National, who voted against it, as using it to their advantage is pathetic.

  4. higherstandard 4

    And on another point clearly the Unions are sock puppets of Labour and will generally support Labour policies in any communication they make prior to the election just as the Business Roundtable and such like will do for the policies of National – surely the public are not so thick as to believe that these groups aren’t supportive of one or other of the political parties.

  5. insider 5

    I dunno, when you have Mallard’s van declared an ad, when you have Mike Williams touting Andrew Little as a future president of Labour and that is as much to do with what he is as well as who he is, there is a lot of murkiness in the law and the relationships between parties.

    It would not be the first time Crown Law opinions have been wrong when tested. We have courts to arbitrate on the law, we don’t rely solely on the views of advocates. Crown Law is an advocate for its client, the Govt, so to treat their opinion as gospel is like believing the person in the dock is a ‘good boy and bit of a wag’ because defence counsel said so.

  6. IrishBill 6

    The electoral act of ’93 had as many gray areas as the EFA. The only reason this law is considered unworkable compared to the ’93 act is that vested interests including National are doing their damnedest to work against it.

  7. higherstandard 7

    Poppycock

  8. insider 8

    A couple of other things:

    The only thing that will deny the EPMU a voice is the law. Blame the people who passed the law if you have a problem with the outcome. To blame National for asking that the law be enforced is like blaming me for starving your children by going to the courts to enforce a contract you had reneged on.

    Bill English has fronted this campaign from the start; why would John Key suddenly step in? If Helen Clark stepped in in similar circumstances, it would usually be a signal that things were going seriously wrong, eg climate change policy this week.

  9. IrishBill 9

    I’m sorry HS, but was that a rebuttal?

  10. higherstandard 10

    IB

    Yes.

    For a fullrebuttal I suggest you refer to Hansard wherein politicians from all sides seem to have no idea what’s going on.

    eg Ms King

    ‘I think the best thing to do, for every member, whether a Minister or a member of Parliament, is go to where he or she can get proper advice, and it is certainly not from me.’

  11. Felix 11

    Bill English has fronted this campaign from the start precisely because they knew (intended) it would get dirty.

  12. IrishBill 12

    Insider, of course Bill has fronted it from the start, this was always going to be dirty work. As for your claim that the law will stop the unions from registering I beg to differ. The Electoral Commission made a decision the EPMU could register and National chose to challenge that. I doubt very much whether the court will cut across the EC’s decision but if it does it will only be because National has spent serious money in its legal campaign to achieve that outcome.

    I suspect that if the campaign period was shortened to the three months National wanted it to be they would be spending that money on “non-election” advertising and wouldn’t give a damn about the EPMU’s third-party status.

  13. george 13

    It seems strange to me that a party that is against the EFA because it claims that it silences people are now trying to use it to silence people.Don’t you find that a little bit hypocritical ?
    If national are proved wrong (that the act in fact does not silence people but only makes it clear who is saying what and who funds them) will they acknowledge that fact?
    I some how doubt it.

  14. Felix 14

    hs
    That was a very strange comment from Ms King yesterday but the context makes it a little clearer, it was about directing legal questions to the EC as the proper authority and not to Ministers who could only give a legal opinion. It was in an answer to pretty much the same question Mr English has asked her every sitting day this year so it’s hardly surprising that her responses are getting a little weird.

    Still, she really could have phrased it a little better, I laughed out loud when I heard it.

  15. higherstandard 15

    Felix what is clear from the idiocy of what is an isn’t advertsing and MPs being pinged for balloons, cars emails etc is that this is a very poorly put together piece of vexatious legislation and to point the finger at National is absurd

  16. insider 16

    Bill

    without knowing the detail I suspect it is a bit more than that. I wonder if there was a general ‘understanding’ of the old act’s grey areas and so they were not contentious, however Labour escalated the political rhetoric around the reasons for the EFA and downplayed its contradictions and impacts, while the Nats have emphasised them. It’s fair enough for you to argue also that the NAts broke any understandings and pushed the boundaries of the grey areas.

    The result it is a highly political law and grey areas cannot be left unchallenged in that environment. Labour have very badly managed the politics around this from the start and so only have themselves to blame if they and their supporters are now wearing the embarrassment of its many flaws.

  17. insider 17

    “I doubt very much whether the court will cut across the EC’s decision but if it does it will only be because National has spent serious money in its legal campaign to achieve that outcome.”

    Never considered the prospect that the court might say the law is clear and that Crown Law got their advice wrong, or that it is unclear but the intent of lawmakers was otherwise?

    IrishBill says: yes, of course it’s a possibility but I’m making a prediction that it won’t happen like that. You never know, I might be proved wrong.

  18. Tane 18

    Insider, I’m noticing among the political right and some of the more partisan journalists (particularly in the Herald) a sense that National can do no wrong on the EFA. Labour lost the PR war on this one and it’s almost as if the media has given National a free pass – do whatever you like, no matter how petty or hypocritical, and we’ll let you off cos it’s all Labour’s fault anyway. Of course, that’s just my perception. Would you agree that this is the case?

  19. IrishBill 19

    HS, it’s interesting you use election advertising as an example. Under the old law the balloons could have been challenged as election advertising as could the car but nobody was silly enough to concern themselves with such trivial things. That they are now indicated the political motivation of those engaged in such silliness.

    Insider, I think the law was needed because I don’t like the idea of elections campaigns turning into competitions over who can spend the most. If National had got their way over the campaign period they would be spending huge money right now based on the premise we are not in a campaign period. Tell me, do you think parties are not currently campaigning?

  20. mike 20

    National are rubbing Labours nose in their stupid law, its as simple as that.
    I can’t see what the left have to cry about

  21. Get back to work Mike, you’re embarrassing yourself and stealing from your boss.

  22. Oh and it’s “Labour’s” not “Labours” – the apostrophe signals possession as in “belonging to Labour”. Moron.

  23. insider 23

    Tane

    National didn;t support the bill or write it so I;m unsure what responsibility they bear for its outcomes that they can be given a free pass on. They have been proven right on a number of issues regarding the drafting of the bill and its unintended consequences.

    I think everyone including the parties will tire of the petty stuff over cars and newsletters and it will stop or be clarified in an amendment to the act. It didn’t stop Annette King waving a two year old policy document around and claiming it was a breach.

  24. mike 24

    I am the boss, Sod off off Robin before you get your wings clipped again.

  25. No you’re not mike. You’ve previously alluded to the fact that you are middle management and that makes you a house-boy. Nice to see you identifying with the boss-class however. Now if you could just stop stealing from them they might give you and even bigger pat on the head…

  26. dave 26

    If you want to write a good blog post on the EFA, you could always write about Trevor Mallards car….. At least Natianal isnt breaking the law as rgularly as Labour does. Liarbour hypocrites. No respect for the law at all

  27. James Kearney 27

    The same article in today’s paper points out National has broken the EFA with one of its cars but no one in Labour was petty enough to take an EFA complaint.

  28. Lew 28

    I think both sides should be welcoming this opportunity to put the EFA to the test. Ultimately when you write law, you write it for the courts to interpret, and the one thing both sides can agree about with regard to the EFA is that it’s complex.

    The judiciary is the properly constituted arbiter in this case, and I say, let them have at it. Both groups are fairly well-resourced, this is the first major case of its kind on an issue of enormous significance for the country, and judicial reviews tend to be conservative (that is, they tend to side with the status quo absent compelling errors of fact, process or law). If the EFA has been properly drafted, the government and the EPMU have nothing to fear but its proper implementation, which is ostensibly what they wanted in the first place.

    Bring it on.

    L

  29. r0b 29

    National are rubbing Labours nose in their stupid law, its as simple as that. I can’t see what the left have to cry about

    The law isn’t stupid, the National Party is stupid for trying to twist the law to it’s own purposes – silencing free speech.

    The law allows the EPMU to speak (as of course it should). When National tried on a perverse reading of the law in an attempt to silence the EPMU the courts told them they were wrong, the EPMU is free to speak. But National are still trying to establish a perverse interpretation with their high court appeal.

    At the same time National followed a second legal route (an injunction) to also silence the EPMU. The injunction has nothing to do with “testing the EFA” – it’s only purpose is to prevent the EPMU from speaking out. This is unbelievably hypocritical behaviour from a party that just last year pretended to champion “free speech”.

  30. insider 30

    r0b

    No court has ruled on this issue only the Electoral Office. Their rulings are subject to court endorsement if requested. The injunction is standard as if it took 3 months to get to court, without it the EPMU could steam ahead and defeat the purpose of the court action.

  31. r0b 31

    No court has ruled on this issue only the Electoral Office.

    Begging your pardon for my sloppy language.

    The injunction is standard as if it took 3 months to get to court, without it the EPMU could steam ahead and defeat the purpose of the court action.

    True, if and only if the intention of the court action is to silence free speech. Shame!

  32. AncientGeek 32

    insider: 3 months? What planet are you living on. It took 3 months to get to what is effectively a status hearing. Ie to find out if there is a sufficient legal argument to let it go through to a full hearing, or to kick back to the EC, or to throw it out.

    What is the current delay for full hearings in the high court at present? 9 months? In that worst case, presumably the nats will attempt to maintain the injunction for that whole period.

    So if the EPMU are silenced for the election campaign, and subsequently the EC’s decision is validated (as I’d expect). Then what sort of penalty will the nats or Farrar get? Now I’d go for a prison term for wasting everyones time, but I suspect it will just be their legal costs.

    Sure the law has to be tested in the courts, but the injunction is ridiculous. Hopefully it will get lifted today.

  33. Dave 33

    And its not just Trevor Mallards car that is contravening the EFA – you`ll find that there will be pictures of other labour vehicles posted in newspapers and on websites. What a stupid law this is. Admit it, rather than defending it. It is not National that is stopping the EPMU from campaigning, it is Labour for passing this law.

  34. Dave it’s “Trevor Mallard’s” not “Mallards”. You’ve missed the possessive apostrophe. You’ve also missed the contractive apostrophe in “it’s”. Other than that you’ve not done too badly this time except for a general lack of argument, fact or sense.

    Grade: C- Dave has potential as a writer but is let down by his inability to grasp the fundamentals.

  35. Lew 35

    AncientGeek: I think we can rely on the courts not to prejudice the election so significantly.

    Dave: Actually, it’s not just Labour’s vehicles. And the thing `stopping the EPMU from campaigning’ (it’s not, really, it just changes things somewhat) is a court injunction, not either party. It’s anyone’s right to object to anything via legal action, and frivolous, baseless or unfounded legal action can be and is punished.

    IANAL, but my instinct is that the EPMU and the Labour party are plainly separate and the court will strike this down without a second thought. There’ll be wailing and gnashing of teeth and it’ll probably be spun as labour-is-corrupt-look-they-control-the-courts-too v see-national-just-have-sour-grapes-they-hate-democracy. I suspect National has more to lose than Labour on this one, and I await the PR battle with interest.

    L

  36. insider 36

    r0b

    I assume the purpose of the action is to clarify the law and the EPMU’s status under the Act. According to Labour and the Standard, the law doesn’t stifle free speech just prevents the influence of money on the election.

    Ancient

    Nats announced their appeal on April 11. The courts can bump important issues up the order I thought. I would have thought this is one that required urgency for all parties, so the law is clear and that EPMU can get on with doing whatever they want without looking over their shoulders.

    As far as I;m aware no election has been called so EPMU are not being unduly constrained; at least not unless they were wanting to coordinate their spending and actions with some other organisations.

  37. r0b 37

    It is not National that is stopping the EPMU from campaigning

    Ahh yes Dave, yes it is.

    it is Labour for passing this law.

    The law does not inhibit free speech, National is trying to twist it so that it does, shame on National.

  38. r0b 38

    insider: I assume the purpose of the action is to clarify the law and the EPMU’s status under the Act.

    Which is a barely plausible cover story except that (1) the Electoral Commission has already clarified the law, and (2) you don’t need an injunction to do that. Injunctions have only one purpose, to shut people up.

  39. AncientGeek 39

    insider: “Nats announced their appeal on April 11.”

    You’re quite correct. I was thinking of the time period since it went to the electoral commission.

    I certainly hope that the high court does either determine this one quickly, or at least removes the injunction. The courts will take their own time over any action. That is as it should be, but it does cause some time issues when you’re looking at a likely election in october or november – ie 5 to 6 months away.

    I wonder how many vexatious cases the nats and their supporters will bring forward. Personally I think they will look more and more like dickheads.

  40. insider 40

    r0b

    THe EC is a govt agency, it is not an independent entity like the courts. If you think it should be the final authority on the law, imagine the consequences if we had another mary Anne Thompson at its head….

    Interesting you are concerned about people having their voice shut down. Did you notice the EPMU seeking to deny not just 60,000 union members but everyone in NZ the right to make a complaint to the Commission. The Double Standard hoist on its own petard again.

  41. insider. The EPMU’s lawyer is just making a series of legal arguments around the challenge against the EPMU’s 60,000 members have their voice heard.

    The law may not allow for challenges to an application to be a third party, and it is perfectly valid to raise that as an argument, along with all the other arguments he will be making.

  42. Sally K 42

    I read the EPMU’s submission, insider, and it seems to me that the point the union was making was that the EC overreached its mandate by conducting an inquiry into the complaints about third party status and that that role should be in the hands of the courts which are, as you say, an independent entity.

    What’s ironic is National arguing in court yesterday that the EFA does not breach the bill of rights while its proxies are claiming the exact opposite in court today.

  43. insider 43

    Sally

    You’ve missed the bigger irony – for months the Standard has been arguing that it is a democratic outrage that this has even gone to court, and now you are saying the EPMU itself thinks the courts are the only one who can rule on this issue. This gets more hilarious by the minute.

  44. Sally K 44

    There certainly is an element of irony in that but it is a somewhat less cynical one that the irony I pointed out. It’s a little off topic I know, but why do you call yourself insider?

  45. insider 45

    Well you know lawyers Sally, black will be white unless your honour finds ‘x’ in which case white will obviously be white and could never have been anything else…

    Why? For no sinister reason. It’s the same one I;ve used for many years in many fora. Why do you call yourself Sally K? :-p

  46. Sally K 46

    I’m not sure, I think it’s got something to do with my mum and dad 🙂

  47. insider 47

    that’s right blame the parents. Where’s your sense of personal responsibility? Bleeding socialists!!

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    In the last couple of weeks, I’ve been busy preparing for our summer paper on Science Communication. Looking for something amusing about ‘risk’ in science, I came across this neat xkcd.com cartoon about why so many people come knocking on my door (or phoning me, or emailing me) desperately wanting ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    6 days ago
  • Swinson’s swithering
    Jo Swinson is doing even worse at this Being Sensible lark that I'd thought.  I've just become aware of the following utterance
    .@KayBurley presses Lib Dem leader @joswinson on whether she would agree to a #Brexit deal 'no matter how bad a deal it is' as long as it had ...
    7 days ago
  • Women’s rights, trans ideology and Gramsci’s morbid symptoms
    by John Edmundson The International Socialist Organisation (ISO) have recently reposted a February article, by Romany Tasker-Poland, explaining ISO’s position in the “trans rights” debate.  It is available on their website and on their Facebook Page.  The article sets out to explain why “socialists support trans rights”.  It reads more ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • We need to take guns off police
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • “Bringing kindness back”
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Press Release: “Fake News” from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance b...
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    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Ever-So-Slightly Bonkers: Simon Bridges Plays To His Base.
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    1 week ago
  • Asking for food
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    Opposable ThumbBy Unknown
    1 week ago
  • Forty years of change in the jobs Kiwi do and the places they call home
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Protecting Fresh Waterways in Aotearoa/NZ: The Strong Public Health Case
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    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Massey University triggered to rebrand
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In a press release today Massey University announced it has decided to rebrand and reorientate after struggling to be a University for grown-ups. For some time the University has wanted to be a safe play space for wee-woke-misogynists who have been really badly triggered ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Swinson backing calls for a second referendum (again)
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    1 week ago
  • An odious bill
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • National is now the party of climate arson
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The environmental footprint of electric versus fossil car
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Manifest” by Andrew Bird – A Song For The Times.
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    1 week ago
  • Passing the buck
    Last month, NZDF's shoddy coverup of what it knew about civilian casualties in Operation Burnham began to fall apart, with the revelation that a report on the matter, which NZDF claimed not to have, had been sitting in an NZDF safe for the past nine years. Yesterday, the man responsible ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • India a major player in Earth observation satellites
    While many imagine that countries like the USA and Europe dominate space activities, in fact India is now a major player on this stage. It launches satellites for its own purposes and also commercially, and has constellations orbiting our planet and returning data of vital importance to that nation in ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • The rot at the top (2).
    Thanks to a report from the Acting Inspector General of Intelligence and Security following a complaint by Nicky Hager, we have come to find out that the SIS illegally spied on Mr. Hager on behalf of the NZDF after publication of Hager’s 2011 book, Other People’s Wars. The NZDF justified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Common misconceptions about “Global Warming”
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    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    1 week ago
  • A climate of tyranny
    For the past week, Extinction Rebellion has been peacefully protesting in London to demand action on climate change. The British government's response? Ban their protests:Police have banned Extinction Rebellion protests from continuing anywhere in London, as they moved in almost without warning to clear protesters who remained at the movement’s ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Collins crushes climate
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    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • More disappointment
    When they were running for election, Labour promised to overhaul the Employment Relations Act and introduce fair pay agreements to set basic pay and conditions on an industry level, preventing bad employers from undercutting good ones. They followed this up by establishing a working group, which reported back in January ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
    A list of indicators of bad science – many of these are found in articles promoted by anti-fluoride activists. Anti-fluoride activists have been pouring money into a scaremongering campaign warning pregnant women not to drink fluoridated water. They claim fluoride will lower the IQ of their future child. Fluoride ...
    1 week ago
  • Losing Labour’s Mills-Tone.
    Nothing Left To Say: Labour's pollster, Stephen Mills, remains swaddled-up in the comforting myths of the 1980s. As if the experience of Roger Douglas’s genuinely radical post-Muldoon policy agenda was literally a once-in-a-lifetime thing – as much as the party could possibly absorb for at least the next 50 years.MEMO ...
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Disability and the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse
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    1 week ago
  • Spain is not a democracy
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • UK Conservatives hate democracy
    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Local bodies
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    2 weeks ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Is this study legit? 5 questions to ask when reading news stories of medical research
    Hassan Vally, La Trobe University Who doesn’t want to know if drinking that second or third cup of coffee a day will improve your memory, or if sleeping too much increases your risk of a heart attack? We’re invested in staying healthy and many of us are interested in reading ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
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    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
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    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago

  • Government to progress Control Orders for community safety
    The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill will have its first reading in Parliament today, Justice Minister Andrew Little says. “The control orders Bill will mean our community is better protected from the risks of the very small number of New Zealand citizens who have engaged in terrorism related activities overseas. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • World-first plan for farmers to reduce emissions
    The Government and farming sector leaders have agreed to a world-first partnership to reduce primary sector emissions in one of the most significant developments on climate action in New Zealand's history. Today farming leaders and the Government announced a plan to join forces to develop practical and cost-effective ways to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • More homes where they are needed
    More houses for homeless New Zealanders are being opened today in Tauranga by Associate Housing Minister Kris Faafoi. Six 2-bedroom quality units are being opened at 878 Cameron Road by Minister Faafoi and Accessible Properties, a local Community Housing Provider (CHP). Accessible Properties now provides more than 1,700 community housing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Minister of Finance and Sport and Recreation to visit Japan and Vietnam
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson departs tomorrow for events and meetings in Japan and Vietnam.  While in Japan, he will discuss economic and fiscal issues including meeting with the Minister of Finance, Taro Aso, and Minister of Economic and Fiscal Policy, Yasutoshi Nishimura. He will meet with the Minister of Education, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Dashboard tracks housing progress
    The Government’s Housing Dashboard released today confirms record numbers of state houses are under construction and shows the Government build programme is gaining momentum.  “After nine years of inaction, and a hands-off attitude from the previous government we’re starting to see things move in the right direction for housing,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Ministerial Statement on the International Convention Centre fire
    Mr Speaker, I wish to make a ministerial statement relating to the Auckland fire. The Government is closely monitoring the situation with the fire at the NZ International Convention Centre and is thankful that everyone is now safe. Firefighters are doing an incredible job managing the fire and bringing it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Government invests in Te Reo, environmental data research
    The Government is investing in ambitious research that will digitise Te Reo, grow the low-carbon protein efficient aquaculture industry, help interpret environmental trends, and large data sets says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. The four projects range from teaching Siri to speak Te Reo to crunching large environmental ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government announces next steps as part of a comprehensive plan to fix skills gap
    A new education-to-employment brokerage service to strengthen connections between local employers and schools. Funding for more trades focused ‘speed-dating’ events to connect schools with employers. Promotional campaign to raise profile of vocational education. The Government is taking action to increase the number of young people taking up vocational education and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Corrections Amendment Bill passes third reading
    A Bill to improve prison security and ensure the fair, safe, and humane treatment of people in prison while upholding public safety has passed its third reading. Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says the Corrections Amendment Bill makes a number of changes to ensure the Corrections Act 2004 is fit for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ngāi Tahu CEO appointed to NZ-China Council
    Minister for Māori Development, Nanaia Mahuta, has selected Arihia Bennett MNZM, Chief Executive Officer of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, as the Te Puni Kōkiri appointed representative on the New Zealand-China Council. The New Zealand-China Council (the Council) was established in 2012 as a New Zealand led and funded organisation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Southern Response claims move to EQC
    Responsibility for processing the small number of Southern Response claims still to be settled will be transferred to EQC by the end of the year. “As claim numbers reduce, it no longer makes sense for the Crown to have two organisations processing the remaining Canterbury claims,” Grant Robertson says. “Since ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Bowel screening starts in Whanganui
    Health Minister David Clark is encouraging Whanganui residents to take up the opportunity for free bowel screening, which can detect cancer early when it’s easier to treat.   Over the next two years 12,000 Whanganui locals, aged 60 to 74 will be invited to participate in the National Bowel Screening ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Pacific Peoples Minister to attend Our Ocean Conference in Norway
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, heads to Oslo today to represent New Zealand at the sixth Our Ocean Conference, which is being hosted by the Norwegian Government from the 23-24 October. “The Our Ocean Conference mobilises real action on issues like marine plastic pollution and the impacts of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government announces 27 percent increase in Trades Academy places
    Two secondary-school initiatives are being expanded as part of the Government’s plan to see more young New Zealanders take up a trade to help close the skills gap.   This includes the largest single increase in Trades Academy places in recent years. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures Conference: Connection...
    Session 4: Pacific Connectivity – Youth, Media and New Opportunities   Kia ora tatou katoa and Warm Pacific greetings to one and all. Representatives of Tainui, the local people of the land, or manawhenua – the indigenous peoples of this area – have welcomed you this morning in accordance with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Lyttelton Parking
    Feedback sought– Lyttelton commercial zone parking  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to remove on-site car parking requirements for new developments in the Lyttelton commercial zone.  The proposal, by Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section 71 of the Greater ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Hagley Oval
    Hon Minister Poto Williams Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration   MEDIA STATEMENT       Tuesday 15 October 2019 Feedback sought – Hagley Oval The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal about Hagley Oval. The proposal was developed by Regenerate Christchurch ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago