Anyone who has a parent or loved one living in an aged care facility understands how vital it is to know that they are safe, comfortable, and receiving adequate care.
I'm concerned that the quality of aged care in New Zealand is getting worse, and that ongoing cuts to the sector are leaving our elderly people more and more vulnerable. Together with Grey Power, Labour Aged Care spokesperson Winnie Laban and I are investigating the state of aged care in New Zealand.
Soon we'll be visiting aged care facilities around the country and holding meetings to hear from the elderly and their families. If you have experiences or concerns with the state of aged care I hope you will share them with us - email me now with your views.
Sue Kedgley, Green MP
- recommended - includes video
You can speak up for every child's right to a fair go by making a submission against the Social Assistance (Future Focus) Bill. This Bill threatens our most vulnerable families, but you can tell the Government that beneficiary bashing has no place in this country. Read submission guide
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Green Party spokesperson for Transport, Gareth Hughes wraps up what he's been doing in this portfolio over the past couple of weeks. Watch the video...
Private prisons are a recipe for disaster
14 April 2010
Building private prisons will make New Zealand's criminal justice system worse, said the Green Party today. Read more...
Any group tasked with looking at welfare in New Zealand needs to have significant input from those who work with beneficiaries, said Green Party unemployment spokesperson Catherine Delahunty. Read more...
Will Whanau Ora address inequality?
8 April 2010
Whanau Ora may help address inequality if the right funding and structures are in place, said the Green Party today. Read more...
Labour and the Greens are to work alongside Grey Power to hold a nationwide investigation into the state of aged care, the parties announced today. Read more...
An equal society is a safe society
1 April 2010
Crime statistics show that John Key's Government's irrational, punitive and populist approach to the justice system is making things worse, said the Green Party today. Read more...
John Key's threat to retain the current foreshore and seabed legislation if Māori don't like his proposals is a patronising and inappropriate way to begin consultation, said the Green Party today. Read more...
Nats break election promise with welfare changes
30 March 2010
The Government's welfare changes break the National Party's 2008 election promises, the Green Party said today. Read more...
Presumably under pressure from ACT, the Government seems to be unable to resist finding places for wingnuts on the various advisory groups it is setting up. Yesterday it continued this trend by appointing Business Roundtable communications consultant and former ACT Party President Catherine Isaac (formerly Judd) to its Welfare Working Group.
Under Isaac's watch, then ACT Party… Read more...
Private Prisons are expensive and dangerous - by David Clendon
Yesterday's announcement that tenders will be called for a private prison to be built in Wiri follows the bulldozing through Parliament of enabling legislation last December. The Greens have opposed this move to privatising prisons, both as a matter of principle and for purely practical reasons.
According to Minister Collins, we 'need' 2270 more prison beds by 2019… Read more...
Joyce confirms worst fears with appointments to Polytech councils - by Gareth Hughes
Tertiary Education Minister Steven Joyce (who by the way still hasn't responded to my drinking challenge, but that's a different blog) yesterday announced his appointees to Polytechnic Councils.
Last year the Government changed the law to end representative democracy on polytechnic boards, and replace them with a smaller number of Government-appointed positions.
We loudly opposed the changes… Read more...
Future unfocused for beneficiaries in Te Tairawhiti - by Catherine Delahunty
Yesterday I spent the morning outside Work and Income's Kaiti office in Gisborne, supporting the Tairawhiti Beneficiary Advocacy Trust's protest against the Future Focus benefits package. The group designed some great slogans for their banners:
The citizens coming and going from the Work and Income office expressed a… Read more...
National fights effort to lift lid on aged care cuts - by Sue Kedgley
What a cheek John Carter has, telling Grey Power that they shouldn't be collaborating with the Labour/Green investigation into the state of aged care!
Winnie Laban tried three times to get an official, cross party investigation into aged care, in the Health select committee, and the National party vetoed it -three times!
Unable to do it officially through… Read more...
Don't mess with university entrance - by David Clendon
You might have heard on this story on Morning Report yesterday (text version here) that a standardised entry requirement for all degree level courses could be in place by 2013.
At the moment, university entrance requirements apply to anyone enrolling for a degree at university, while polytechnics and other tertiary institutions are not bound to use UE… Read more...
The Social Assistance (Future Focus) Bill has been referred to Parliament's Social Services Select Committee for submissions.
This is an ideologically inspired beneficiary-bashing Bill that lacks any evidential support for most of its provisions. The Regulatory Impact Statement from the Ministry of Social Development that accompanied its introduction stated:
There is no research currently available which… Read more...
Inequality in Aotearoa: Life expectancy - by Metiria Turei
In the pursuit of happiness there is one essential thing you need: good health. There are many contributing factors to good health and there are also many indicators to measure if you are healthy. Over the next few posts I'll explore a few of these indicators. This post is focussed on life expectancy.
Inequality kills. Those at the… Read more...
Have your say on the Building Act - by Gareth Hughes
The Government is looking at changing the Building Act and is currently consulting on its proposals, so this is your chance to have your say.
It's a big deal - along with food and water, shelter is one of the essentials of life.
The last big review in 2004 cleaned up many of the disastrous provisions from the original… Read more...
Aged care investigation launches - by Sue Kedgley
I am looking forward to joining Labour's Winnie Laban for a nationwide tour to investigate the state of aged care in New Zealand.
Winnie and I will be travelling around New Zealand, talking to people in their homes and communities about the quality of care they receive. We will be working closely with Grey Power and attending… Read more...
Inequality in Aotearoa: a brief history of inequality - by Metiria Turei
“For over 90 per cent of our existence as human beings we lived, almost exclusively, in highly egalitarian societies.”
- from The Spirit Level by Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett
In the case of New Zealand, it has only been quite recently -- the 1990s in particular -- where inequality has emerged as a defining feature of our social landscape.
Save our Services. - by Gareth Hughes
With the closing date for submissions on the Education (Freedom of Association) Amendment Bill (better known as the VSM Bill) tomorrow (31st March), now's really the time to be getting your submission in.
Sir Roger Douglas' VSM Bill has the noble-sounding intention of "guarantee[ing] the right of students to the freedom of association", but the existing Act already does… Read more...
Inequality in Aotearoa: why inequality is bad for us all - by Metiria Turei
Today I'm launching a series of blogs about the issue of inequality in Aotearoa New Zealand.
Throughout April and May, I'll be blogging twice a week about this important issue. Covering a wide range of issues from community life to obesity, violence to educational achievement, teenage pregnancy to life expectancy, I want to highlight how inequality in New Zealand… Read more...
Freda Frog meets Future Focus - by frog
I have a cousin named Freda Frog. Freda is single, lives on her own, and suffers from a chronic illness, for which she gets a sickness benefit. She also gets an accommodation supplement to help pay her rent (but I'll leave that out of this story until the very end because accommodation supplement is not affected by any… Read more...
The National-led Government is keen to catch up with Australia in many areas, but do they really have to copy Australia's failures?
In 2006, John Howard's Australian Government introduced welfare reforms that were remarkably similar to those proposed by Paula Bennett earlier this week. An evaluation of those reforms (PDF, 2.0MB) was completed in May 2008. It found:
The evaluation results were mixed, providing evidence that Welfare to Work was… Read more...
Immigration Act 2009 Amendment Bill - Keith's speeches against - Keith Locke MP, 31 March 2010
The Green Party will be voting against this bill for the same reasons as it voted against the passing of the Immigration Bill last year. This amending bill implements many of the provisions in the Immigration Act that undermine civil liberties, and we complained about them during the passage of the Immigration Bill. Watch video or read transcript...