Catherine Delahunty – Green Candidate Number 8

Here’s video footage of Catherine Delahunty’s campaign speech at the Green Party conference a month ago. Catherine describes herself as an “activist, feminist, mother, gardener, writer, teacher, mediator, advocate – and stand-up comic.” A political activist since her teens, she has worked for change in the areas of social justice, Te Tiriti and environmental issues. She has a history of challenging corporate polluters, and a deep interest in developing decision-making processes which involve everyone.

15 Comments Posted

  1. This may help with the Greens Population policy Frog (after all we are concerned with the state of the planet aren’t we!):

    “2. Population and Development in the Philippine Context

    Around the beginning of the 1960s, the Philippines, Thailand and the Republic of Korea
    had about the same population size. While these two other countries have long achieved
    replacement fertility (total fertility rate (TFR) of around 2), the Republic of Korea before
    the 1990s and Thailand about the middle of the 1990s, the Philippines has still a long
    way to go with the latest computed TFR of 3.5 in 2003. As a result, the population sizes
    of the three countries have diverged. By around 2000, Philippines had about 30 million
    more people than the Republic of Korea and 16 million more than Thailand (Figure 1).2
    In addition, while these two countries continued to register consistently high economic
    growth, the Philippines had slow and inconsistent growth rates. After putting these two
    together, it would not be difficult to understand why the per capita income of the country
    has not gone far beyond 1,000 US dollars for more than two decades now (Figure 2). It
    would not be surprising also to realize, as will be discussed in the detail in the
    succeeding sections, that poverty reduction has been slow and tentative (Reyes, 2002).

    As one looks at other development indicators, the overall long-term development picture
    given becomes even easier to understand. Savings rates have been low, even often
    times lower than Indonesia in spite of the higher per capita income in the Philippines
    (Figure 3). Labor force participation of women is lower compared to many other
    countries in Asia even if the educational attainment of women is higher (see for instance,
    Manning, 1999). The high school attendance rate3 that the country is proud about for so
    long is eroding fast.
    Yet the issue of the role of population growth and family size in development, in general,
    and poverty and vulnerability, particular, is largely unresolved. This reality persists
    despite the growing literature worldwide and also in the Philippines providing evidence
    on the importance of population growth and family size in development (see for instance
    Schelzig, K. (2005), Alonzo et al. (2004), Orbeta (2002), and de Dios and Associates
    (1993) in the case of the Philippines). The two glaring testimonies to this problem are:
    (a) the equivocal support given by the government to the population program, and (b)
    the fact that up to now virtually all of contraceptives supplies in public facilities are
    supplied by donors as national government has not appropriated money for these
    commodities.4 Herrin (2002) describes in detail the noncommittal attitude of the national
    government on the program and the hazy population policy. He urges the national
    government to: (a) address the issue of rapid population growth and fertility reduction,
    (b) be clear about its population policy, (c) provide the needed resources for the
    program, (d) work with the Catholic church hierarchy, and (e) listen to the married
    couples with unmet needs who have consistently expressed their need for family
    planning services. There have been several ways the national leadership had avoided

    (LGUs) to decide what to do with family planning services citing the Local Government
    Code (LGC) of 1991 as the basis. The LGC has transferred many direct services,
    including maternal and child health service and family planning, to LGUs. This lack of
    national guidance has resulted in a fragmented and local programs often working in
    opposite directions largely depending on the persuasion of the local executive (Orbeta
    2004; Alonzo et al. 2004). One perhaps may ask whether there is any real demand for
    family planning services that government has to respond to. As pointed out by earlier, all
    demographic surveys have documented the consistent high demand for family planning
    services from women of reproductive age (Herrin, 2002). It has been pointed out also in
    Orbeta (2004) that the poor have lesser access to family planning services and that their
    unwanted fertility is very much higher than those of the rich. The demand, therefore, for
    an appropriately funded population program is clear what is absent is the national
    government’s resolve to push the program consistently as other countries, such
    Thailand, Indonesia and Viet Nam, have done. The environment is ripe for a long time
    but the national government has refused to respond positively to this consistent and
    well-expressed demand.
    3. Empirical Overview of the Relationships of Family Size, Poverty and
    Vulnerability to Poverty
    3.1 Poverty Incidence, Gap and Severity and Family Size
    The easiest and perhaps the most obvious way to demonstrate the relationship of
    poverty and family size is to show the extent of poverty incidence by size of family. Table
    1 shows the incidence of poverty by family size in the last 25 years using the Family
    Income and Expenditure Survey (FIES) and official poverty lines. Clearly the incidence
    of poverty rises as family size increases. For instance, in 1985 the poverty incidence for
    a four-member household is 36.4 while it is 59.9 for a 9 or more-member household.
    Hardly surprising, twenty-five years later in 2000, the incidence of poverty for a 4-
    member household is 23.8, while the corresponding incidence for a 9 or more-member
    4 USAID, the primary donor of contraceptive supplies, has recently indicated to government that it is phasing
    out its provision of contraceptive supplies.

    household is 57.3. This relationship has not changed over the last 25 years. If at all, the
    difference in poverty incidence has even widened.
    The picture is virtually duplicated when one looks at both poverty gap and severity by
    family size. The average proportionate distance between the poverty line and the
    average income of the poor (the poverty gap) doubles as one moves from a 4-member
    household to a 9 or more-member household. This has even worsened over the years.
    In 1985 this gap is 10% and 23% for the 4-member and 9 or more-member household,
    respectively, or about twice as large (Table 1). By 2000 the relative proportions are 6%
    and 22%, respectively, or more than three times as large. The square of this gap, which
    a well-accepted measure of the severity of poverty because it puts higher weight on
    those farther from the poverty line, also tells an identical story.
    All of these indicators, thus show that no matter what poverty measure one uses, there
    is clear indication that poverty worsens as one moves from smaller to bigger family size

  2. kiore1,

    “The Green Party education policy has little to say about encouraging home schooling…”

    Sorry, but you’re 100% wrong. The Greens are the only party who DO say much about home schooing in their education policy. You’ll be surprised how good the Green Education Policy is if you read it – detailed and well thought out. I won’t give all the stuff on encouraging community partnerships as well but you can see that here:

    Here’s what that doco says about Home Schooling:

    “Home Schooling

    The Green Party supports alternatives to full-time school attendance, and the educational choices of over 6,000 children and young people who learn at home.The Green Party will:

    6. Ensure that the Ministry of Education develops a supportive and constructive review process to work with parents and learners at home.
    7. Ensure that the Ministry of Education develops capacity in home based education, and requires that ERO reviewers have sufficient understanding and knowledge of home based education philosophies and practices, including natural learning methods and un-schooling.
    8. Examine ways to improve resources for home-based learners, such as enabling home-schooled children to register with a school that can lend them materials and resources.
    9. Extend part-time or flexi-school options to allow home-based educators (and learners) to attend courses that may require special tuition or resources (such as science labs) that are too costly to provide in the home.”

  3. BP,

    So she’s giving a simple and accurate description of the law change. The change was to the law on Assault. It removed a clause that legalised assault by parents on kids under certain circumstances. That’s a simple matter of fact – no odd semantics involved.

    That you find that description odd says far more about your opinions on the matter than it does about Delahunty.


  4. I see Friend of the Earth Australia has been taken over by the left too:

    “Although circulated widely amongst green organisations, the letter attracted a total of just 16 signatories. Cam Walker, FoEA’s national liaison officer, told Green Left Weekly: “We have been disappointed at what has been an almost complete absence of the green movement in both the debate around treatment of asylum seekers and in terms of a progressive voice on population issues. Many prominent greens who have advocated positions on population have tended to concentrate on population and not the deeper issues of Australia’s overconsumption of resources or our ecological debt to other nations.?

  5. Societies soft under belly:

    “Ms Dyson announced plans to scrap “stereotyped” names such as the dpb, and invalid and sickness benefits when the Government moves to a single core benefit next year – a change that will require the ministry to drop the names from all its brochures, letters, websites and training material from April.”

    “So there it is again. This change is primarily about altering non-beneficiary attitudes. More psycho-social engineering. The politically correct process of changing the language to change how people think…………..’

    Very Green Party

  6. Catherine – you are my favourite candidate and hope with all my heart that we get you into Parliament. What a breath of fresh air you are. Along with about at least a dozen others (in the house) would be good. Go Girl!

  7. no 8 on the list ?
    wow you must be really short of candaties to put her there

    please put her higher do us a favour

    I am sorry but someone who calls themself a “activist, feminist, mother, gardener, writer, teacher, mediator, advocate and a stand-up comic. has far to high an opinnion of themselves

    I am just a simple farmer and father and for me that is plenty

  8. “Everyone” should include all stakeholders. It is possible that the majority of adults support continued smacking of children, but I wonder how many children were polled. Similarly, I wonder how many chickens would support continued use of battery sheds or broiler houses. Sometimes we need to speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.

    Blue Peter has a point over forcing kids to go to school. I am currently teaching in a tertiary environment where students are there because they want to be, and teaching is a real pleasure. However, my expeience in secondary schools is that I was more like a jailer than a teacher, and had to spend so much time keeping order, and policing ridiculous rules like uniforms that I had very little time for any real teaching.

    The exception was a group of home schooled children that I taught philosophy to, who were pleasant, intelligent, well behaved, self-disciplined, and respectful without being subservient. The Green Party education policy has little to say about encouraging home schooling, partnerships with industry and other potential employers, apprenticeships, engagements with the community, or other alternatives to the heirarchical, bullying and oppressive compulsory education system. This is something it needs to address IMO.

    Going on from Blue Peter’s comment, the only other group of people that we incarcerate against their will for 9 years of their life are dangerous criminals, and I wonder what crime children have committed.

  9. “ban the legalised assault on children”

    Semantics, eh.

    How about the legalised incarceration of children (sent to their rooms)? The legalised emotional abuse of children (sending them to the naughty corner)? The legalised kidnapping of children? (forcing them to go to school)?

    Do the Greens support all of the above? Same rights as adults and all that?
    Do the Greens support the legalised emotional abuse of children?

    Careful arguing that it is a matter of degree, eh….

  10. Don’t go the shouting and jumping around approach. Also don’t agree with the stand up comic claim .
    Does she have much detail on the part tino rangitiratanga will play as opposed to kawangatanga under the treaty?
    Where were the Greens when the good old kiwi bach went west?

  11. You going to give any examples of how she’s “sexist” big bro?

    I think part of the point of developing decision-making processes that involve everyone is that sometimes minorities get to make decisions that matter more to them than to other people. Sometimes that means overturning a purely numerical majority. There are good things and bad things about this approach, but if managed properly it works well.

  12. “and a deep interest in developing decision-making processes which involve everyone”

    Except when it comes to going against the wishes of 83% of the population, perhaps it might have been more accurate to say that the has ” a deep interest in developing decision-making processes which involve everyone” ….when it suits her point of view.

    I also note that you did not list “sexist” as one of her attributes.

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