web analytics

RIP Jeanette Fitzsimons

Written By: - Date published: 10:04 am, March 6th, 2020 - 33 comments
Categories: Environment, greens, political parties, sustainability - Tags:

Just a short post to acknowledge the death of Jeanette Fitzsimons.

She was quite exceptional.  A totally dedicated politician who lived her life according to her beliefs.  Someone who always chose to argue the merits and not engage in the political game playing that is all too common in Parliament.

Someone who was completely on the right side of all of the significant issues that our world is facing.

She was of the firm belief that the role of politics was to achieve good, not to exercise power.

RIP Jeanette.

33 comments on “RIP Jeanette Fitzsimons ”

  1. This is really sad news. Jeanette deserved a long and happy retirement after a lifetime of dedicated work for the environmental movement. It's such a shame that's been cut short.

  2. When Jeanette won our family were overjoyed. She represented a breath of fresh air, and a challenge to old thinking about mining and the environment.

    Her family have lost a treasured member, and we too grieve at her passing.

  3. Ad 4

    A life lived to the full.

    A real lighthouse to me.

    Very sorry to hear it.

  4. Robert Guyton 5

    One hot summer's afternoon in the streets behind the cathedral in Nelson, I saw a woman hauling her wheeled-suitcase up a too-steep footpath, so I offered to help. The woman was Jeanette. As we walked, she chatted to me about her sons, one of whom, like one of mine, played Irish music. I found her a gracious person. I wondered to myself, why she hadn't called a taxi to deliver her to her accomodation. I figured she was modest and unassuming.

    Sometime later, at the invitation of Rod Donald, I stayed in the Thorndon cottage shared by him and Jeanette, at the peak of the "Corngate" brouhaha. Throughout that stressful time, and behind the scenes, Jeanette remained … modest and unassuming.

    I admired her enormously.

  5. About the only NZ politician I truly really respected since the infliction of Rogernomics on this country in the 1980s.

    RIP Jeanette, you will be missed.

  6. Sans Cle 7

    Very sad to hear.

    Inspirational woman and a trailblazer for Green politics.

  7. RedLogix 8

    Both Jeanette and Rod managed that rare feat of being both authentically committed to their cause, yet shorn the narrow zealotry that so often comes with it. Their loss, both too soon, has hurt this country in ways that only future generations might fully appreciate.

    A life lived to the full; far more than most of us can say. Let her example inspire.

  8. solkta 9

    It was a sad time for me this morning when this news broke. I had the utmost respect for Jeanette. To me her name meant integrity like no other.

  9. mary_a 10

    Reposted from Open Mike.

    RIP Jeanette Fitzsimons. A highly principled woman who lived her life through her green convictions. She and the late Rod Donald were the ultimate green team leadership in Parliament, with Jeanette being the first and only so far Green MP to win an electorate seat. A sad loss for NZ.

    Go well Jeanette.

  10. millsy 11

    Unfortunately her refusal to compromise on GE in 2002 blots her copybook.

    Threatening to bring down the government for allowing GE in very limited circumstances drove Helen into the arms of the God-botherers of United Future and Lab5 drifted rightwards from then on. Imgine what a Labour-Green-Jim Anderton government would have done from 2002-2005. We could have decarbonised the economy with minimal fuss.

    • KJT 11.1

      I don't think sticking to principles, is a blot.

      It would be better if more politicians did just that.

    • solkta 11.2

      GE was the more pressing issue of the time for the Party. It may not have been for you. Holding this ground so firmly is part of the integrity i speak of.

      Once GE is commercially released into the environment, as it will be eventually if the moratorium is lifted next year, there is no going back. That's why we felt it necessary to make it a bottom line. For other issues, it is possible to negotiate "progress towards" Green Party goals. But on commercial release of GE, it's all or nothing.


    • McFlock 11.3

      Didn't agree with it and I think they over-egged it, but there are a lot worse principles people live by.

      sadly, the days are long past (if they ever existed) where the worst criticism someone could come up with about me was along the lines of "stood up for a reasonable principle too strongly".

    • Rosemary McDonald 11.4

      I think you're drawing an awful long bow there millsy.

      I'd need much more than your opinion to accept that a "Labour-Green-Jim Anderton government could have decarbonised the economy…" with or without fuss.

    • pat 11.5

      " We could have decarbonised the economy with minimal fuss."


    • Scott 11.6

      This is a revisionist or one sided view, it was a tense time as Labour had been found out about 'Corngate' during the RCGM . We would not have our good reputation for high quality safe, natural food, if we had allowed commercial release of GMOs; the was the case and still is the case. We dodged a bullet and Labour should be happy with that. Look to Argentina and USA for what can go wrong. Check out the growth of the the non GMO project in the USA .The NZ Journalists were turned early. So Labour had a barely concealed contempt and paranoia for the Greens & the Eco-Labour branches for a time.

      Currently, its ground hog day , with the push for unregulated ‘gene editing’ with the risk returning. We still need the Jeanette's who are on the right side of history.

  11. Cinny 12

    Much respect.

  12. adam 13

    Jeanette had a aura about her which was special. I remember being at a protest when things went pear shaped – the police and some protesters decided to get into it. Jeanette just calmly told everyone she was very upset by their actions. At that point both groups walked away from each other. It was a surreal and very cool moment. I think it proved how all people respected her, and her opinion, no matter their political persuasion.

  13. Cricklewood 14

    Sad day, really enjoyed the Country Calender show they were on.

    I think it's fair to say the Green party has never really managed to replace Rod and Jeanette in terms of its Leadership.

    • Robert Guyton 14.1

      Different era, different challenges, different styles. Some of the new Greens are "Jeanettes" smiley

      • Cricklewood 14.1.1

        Takes a long time for a mighty Kahikatea to find the light and grow out of its junior foliage.

        I hope there is enough time left for those new Jeanettes…

  14. Ed 15

    Total Respect.

    [Welcome back, Ed. Please stick to this combination of user name + e-mail address from now on and the system will recognise you as you and only one of you – Incognito]

  15. Sacha 16

    Former Green MP, Coromandel neighbour and friend Catherine Delahunty talks with RNZ's Kathryn Ryan (20mins): https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/2018737257/former-greens-leader-jeanette-fitzsimmons-dies

  16. SHG 17

    I've tactically voted across the spectrum based on what I thought was important in each election year. At the last GE I party voted Green but I don't think of myself as a Greenie per se.

    Nevertheless I'm raising a glass to Jeanette right now. She walked what she talked, and we could use more like her these days.


  17. Sabine 18

    She was a great women, a skilled fighter, and as per her one and only debate on telly with Helen Clark and John Key a women of forsight and wit. I would have loved to vote for her.

    May she travels in peace, may the afterlife be kind to her. NZ is going to miss her.

  18. riffer 19

    Jeanette was responsible I guess for turning my party vote from Team Red to Team Green for the three elections prior to the last one. I wish we still had her likes in the greens today. A wonderful principled woman we'll not see the likes of again. Much respect. A sad occasion.

  19. Macro 20

    Today we gathered to celebrate the life of Jeanette. Around 400 gathered at the Kauranga Valley Hall, just down the road from the farm of Harry and Jeanette, to hear live music (Celtic of course), to eat and drink, to reminisce, and to dance. It was a beautiful event totally befitting a beautiful person.

  20. Scott 21

    Capitalism wont help the planet with austerity for many lately, nor did the severity of communism, still clarity comes from several quarters Bernie Sanders being one of them. The Greens’ consensus-based decision-making another.
    When the pre neo-liberal fore runner Values Party was formed: “If this planet’s a corporation, (then) it’s a corpse.” was a phrase used, we are still slow learning.
    Perhaps Greta is a younger version? We need the science-aware, peaceful protests or 'canaries in the coalmine' if you will : https://www.yanisvaroufakis.eu/2020/03/11/climate-change-is-capitalisms-waterloo-irish-examiner/

    Thank you Janette, your legacy and imagination and the NZ Green party, allies, the international Green movement and Greenpeace. Lets hope we can integrate the red flesh, black pips and the green shell our our local kinder ,watermelon .

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • NZ announces a third P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    The Government has deployed a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea, announced Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark. “New Zealand has long supported ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Pacific trade and development agreement a reality
    Pacific regional trade and development agreement PACER Plus will enter into force in 60 days now that the required eight countries have ratified it. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the announcement that the Cook Islands is the eighth nation to ratify this landmark agreement. “The agreement represents ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Securing a pipeline of teachers
    The Government is changing its approach to teacher recruitment as COVID-19 travel restrictions continue, by boosting a range of initiatives to get more Kiwis into teaching. “When we came into Government, we were faced with a teacher supply crisis,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “Over the past three years, we ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Border exceptions for a small number of international students with visas
    The Government has established a new category that will allow 250 international PhD and postgraduate students to enter New Zealand and continue their studies, in the latest set of border exceptions. “The health, safety and wellbeing of people in New Zealand remains the Government’s top priority. Tight border restrictions remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • First COVID-19 vaccine purchase agreement signed
    The Government has signed an agreement to purchase 1.5 million COVID-19 vaccines – enough for 750,000 people – from Pfizer and BioNTech, subject to the vaccine successfully completing all clinical trials and passing regulatory approvals in New Zealand, say Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods and Health Minister Chris Hipkins. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • International statement – End-to-end encryption and public safety
    We, the undersigned, support strong encryption, which plays a crucial role in protecting personal data, privacy, intellectual property, trade secrets and cyber security.  It also serves a vital purpose in repressive states to protect journalists, human rights defenders and other vulnerable people, as stated in the 2017 resolution of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Ministry of Defence Biodefence Assessment released
    The Ministry of Defence has today released a Defence Assessment examining Defence’s role across the spectrum of biological hazards and threats facing New Zealand. Biodefence: Preparing for a New Era of Biological Hazards and Threats looks at how the NZDF supports other agencies’ biodefence activities, and considers the context of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020
    New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020 Hon David Parker’s response following Thomas Piketty and Esther Duflo. Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening, wherever in the world you might be. I first acknowledge the excellent thought provoking speeches of Thomas Piketty and Esther ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Kaipara Moana restoration takes next step
    A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed today at Waihāua Marae between the Crown, local iwi and councils to protect, restore and enhance the mauri of Kaipara Moana in Northland. Environment Minister David Parker signed the document on behalf of the Crown along with representatives from Ngā Maunga Whakahī, Ngāti ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand and Uruguay unite on reducing livestock production emissions
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Uruguayan Minister of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries Carlos María Uriarte have welcomed the launch of a three-year project that will underpin sustainable livestock production in Uruguay, Argentina, and Costa Rica.  The project called ‘Innovation for pasture management’ is led by Uruguay’s National Institute of Agricultural ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 3100 jobs created through marae upgrades
    Hundreds of marae throughout the country will be upgraded through investments from the Provincial Growth Fund’s refocused post COVID-19 funding to create jobs and put money into the pockets of local tradespeople and businesses, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta have announced. “A total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Health volunteers recognised in annual awards
    Health Minister Chris Hipkins has announced 9 teams and 14 individuals are the recipients of this year’s Minister of Health Volunteer Awards.  “The health volunteer awards celebrate and recognise the thousands of dedicated health sector volunteers who give many hours of their time to help other New Zealanders,” Mr Hipkins ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community COVID-19 Fund supports Pacific recovery
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio says a total of 264 groups and individuals have successfully applied for the Pacific Aotearoa Community COVID-19 Recovery Fund, that will support Pacific communities drive their own COVID-19 recovery strategies, initiatives, and actions. “I am keen to see this Fund support Pacific ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community benefits from Māori apprenticeships
    Up to 50 Māori apprentices in Wellington will receive paid training to build houses for their local communities, thanks to a $2.75 million investment from the Māori Trades and Training Fund, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Ngāti Toa Rangatira Incorporated to provide its Ngā Kaimahi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Training fund supports Māori jobseekers
    Rapidly growing sectors will benefit from a $990,000 Māori Trades and Training Fund investment which will see Wellington jobseekers supported into work, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Sapphire Consultants Ltd. to help up to 45 Māori jobseekers into paid training initiatives over two years through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ruakura Inland Port development vital infrastructure for Waikato
    The Government is investing $40 million to develop an inland port at Ruakura which will become a freight super-hub and a future business, research and residential development for the Waikato, Urban Development and Transport Minister Phil Twyford, and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today. The funding has been has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Appointments made to Defence Expert Review Group
    Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today the establishment of an Expert Review Group to review a number of aspects of the New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) structure, information management and record-keeping processes.  The Expert Review Group’s work arises out of the first recommendation from the Report of the Government’s Inquiry ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • No active community cases of COVID-19
    There are no active community cases of COVID-19 remaining in the country after the last people from the recent outbreak have recovered from the virus, Health Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “This is a big milestone. New Zealanders have once again through their collective actions squashed the virus. The systems ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clean energy upgrade for more public buildings
    More public buildings will be supported by the Government to upgrade to run on clean energy, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. Minister Shaw announced that Lincoln and Auckland universities will receive support through the Clean-Powered Public Service Fund to replace fossil fuel boilers. Southern, Taranaki, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Schools back donations scheme for the second year
    More schools have opted in to the donations scheme for 2021, compared to 2020 when the scheme was introduced. “The families of more than 447,000 students will be better off next year, with 94% of eligible schools and kura opting into the scheme,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ruapehu cycle trails gets PGF boost
    The spectacular Mountains to Sea cycle trail in Ruapehu District will receive $4.6 million in funding from the Provincial Growth Fund for two additional trails, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This is an exciting development for the local community, and one that will provide significant economic opportunities ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Update to air border order strengthens crew requirements
    Additional measures coming into effect on Monday will boost our defence against COVID-19 entering New Zealand through the air border, Health Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “As part of our precautionary approach and strategy of constant review, we’re tightening the requirements around international aircrew,” Chris Hipkins said. The COVID-19 Public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • A true picture of Māori business activity
    A better picture of the contribution Māori businesses make to the economy will be possible with changes to the way information is collected about companies and trading enterprises. Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta and Small Business Minister Stuart Nash have announced a new option for Māori enterprises who are part ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF funding for Taranaki projects
    The South Taranaki museum, a New Plymouth distillery and a Pasifika building firm will benefit from a Government investment totalling more than $1 million, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. The $1.05m in grants and loans from the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will help the recipients expand and create ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Fijian Language Week 2020 inspires courage and strength during COVID-19 pandemic
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio says the theme for the 2020 Fijian Language Week reflects the strong belief by Fijians that their language and culture inspires courage and strength that is strongly needed in times of emergencies, or through a significant challenge like the global COVID-19 pandemic ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Trades training builds on iwi aspirations
    An investment of $2.025 million from the Māori Trades and Training Fund will support Māori to learn new skills while making a positive difference for their communities, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “K3 Development Limited Partnership will receive $2,025,000 for its Takitimu Tuanui apprenticeship programme, which will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago