Let’s hear it for MMP! Last night in Parliament Labour MP Sue Moroney’s bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks passed its first reading by one vote (let’s hear it for the voters of Northland!). Only National and ACT opposed. Good news:
Paid Parental leave legislation passes first hurdle over Government opposition
Parliament voted to send the bill to a select committee after Labour gained the support of United Future, the Maori Party, the Greens and NZ First, with only National and Act opposed.
Moroney said her bill recognised that supporting parents to be at home in the first six months of a baby’s life was a wise investment in New Zealand’s future. Moroney’s bill extends paid parental leave by eight weeks to 26 weeks.
However, “wise investment in in New Zealand’s future” is not something that National understands or cares about:
The Government has confirmed it will use its power of financial veto to stop a bill extending paid parental leave after it failed to stop the bill passing its first hurdle in Parliament.
The Nats can find $26 million for a flutter on the flags, or $1.7 billion to bailout South Canterbury Finance, but they can’t find the money ($100 – 150 million a year) to invest in giving children a better start in life. So they are going to veto a policy that helps young families and has been passed by the democratic process in Parliament. Year 7 of the Brighter Future and counting…