human rights Archive

  • David Clendon

    National’s constitutional quagmire - by David Clendon

    The High Court has ruled that the courts can look at whether prisoners should be allowed to vote. ‘Jailhouse lawyer’ Arthur Taylor took up the issue of prisoners’ voting rights and wanted a declaration that the current law, which bans all prisoners from voting, was inconsistent with the Bill of Rights Act (BORA).  However, the […] read more
    July 16, 2014 2:07 pm - 3 Comments
  • Jan Logie

    Government rejects UN human rights recommendations - by Jan Logie

    The Government has chosen to reject over a fifth of key recommendations by the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on the state of human rights in New Zealand. As I’ve already written a couple of times, New Zealand was subject to its second Universal Periodic Review (UPR) this year.  In January, the United Nations […] read more
    June 23, 2014 3:05 pm - 1 Comment
  • Catherine Delahunty

    Barrick Gold’s violence highlights need for ethical investment - by Catherine Delahunty

    The Green Party has long advocated for ethical investment by the New Zealand Superannuation Fund.  Several companies, in which the Super Fund invests, have been accused of human rights violations, the production of nuclear arms, and causing severe environmental damage. One such company was Barrick Gold– a Canadian mining company which has caused environmental damage […] read more
    June 12, 2014 10:30 am - No Comments
  • Gareth Hughes

    The right to Internet access - by Gareth Hughes

    The Internet has changed our world. It is now a major part of how people access information, express themselves, engage in financial transactions, and participate in the democratic process. UN Special Rapporteur Frank La Rue “…believes that the Internet is one of the most powerful instruments of the 21st century for increasing transparency in the […] read more
    May 15, 2014 4:09 pm - 3 Comments
  • Gareth Hughes

    Have your say on what Internet rights should look like - by Gareth Hughes

    Today I launched my Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill – NZ’s first ever bill crowdsourced by a political party. The launch happened live on Reddit, and I was joined in my office Joy Liddicoat (former Human Rights Commissioner and present champion for online rights) and with the media watching on. What I launched today was […] read more
    April 23, 2014 4:28 pm - 3 Comments
  • Kennedy Graham

    Democracy at the Global level? An idea whose time is (almost) come - by Kennedy Graham

    Last week I attended (with one National and one Labour colleague) the 130th meeting of the Inter-Parliamentary Union.  The IPU is the world gathering of MPs from 163 parliaments.  It is a big affair.  The peoples’ representatives talk to one another.  They embrace, fall out, pass resolutions, and return to base.  It is something worth […] read more
    March 25, 2014 11:33 am - 4 Comments
  • David Clendon

    Punishment and compassion - by David Clendon

    A line in my speech to the candidate conference last Sunday seems to have generated some interest.  I spoke “…of restoring to health the offender and those offended against, of an obligation to respect human rights even as we punish”. The Greens’ approach to justice is based on a restorative approach – as outlined in […] read more
    February 20, 2014 1:02 pm - 2 Comments
  • Jan Logie

    155 human rights recommendations for NZ – how did this happen? - by Jan Logie

    Last week the United Nations Human Rights Council reviewed New Zealand’s progress on human rights, in what’s called the Universal Periodic Review. This was our second assessment. The first was in 2009, and back then, 64 recommendations were made on things we could do better. This time 155 recommendations were made.  This does not bode […] read more
    February 4, 2014 10:26 am - 5 Comments
  • David Clendon

    ‘Monitoring Places of Detention’ – a Wake-up call for NZers. - by David Clendon

    A report released this month has provided evidence supporting the view that we still have a lot of work to do to make our prisons decent, humane, and likely to release people back into society in better shape then when they went in. New Zealand is a signatory to the ‘Optional Protocol to the Convention […] read more
    December 18, 2013 3:57 pm - 3 Comments
  • Jan Logie

    Rights and their role in shaping our country - by Jan Logie

    This week the constitutional advisory panel reported back to government. Based on really extensive consultations they’ve made some great recommendations for government action. The recommendation I’m most excited is adding economic, social and cultural rights, and environmental right to the Bill of Rights Act. Well done Amnesty for getting the economic social and cultural rights […] read more
    December 6, 2013 5:08 pm - 2 Comments
  • Catherine Delahunty

    Asian Human Rights Commission report on genocide in West Papua - by Catherine Delahunty

    A new report released by Hong Kong based Asian Human Rights Commission is a damning indictment of the historical role of both the Indonesian and Australian Governments in West Papua. The report shows a consistent pattern of state killings, actual massacres and attacks on communities over the last 30 years. It shows that helicopters supplied […] read more
    October 25, 2013 3:17 pm - 1 Comment
  • Jan Logie

    Blinkering the watchdogs - by Jan Logie

    The Government’s decision to freeze funding for the Human Rights Commission (HRC) until 2020 has resulted in a proposal to cut 15% of staff at the Commission. New Zealand has very few checks on the power of Government and minimal tools to fight discrimination. By the response to the marriage equality bill and widespread public […] read more
    April 22, 2013 10:50 am - 6 Comments
  • Gareth Hughes

    SOP to Petrobras is law-making at its worst - by Gareth Hughes

    Simon Bridges’ amendment to the Crown Minerals Act criminalising protest activity at sea has just been tabled in Parliament and is an unneeded overreaction that takes away Kiwis right to protest. read more
    April 3, 2013 4:05 pm - 10 Comments
  • Jan Logie

    Trade and human rights - by Jan Logie

    I was relieved today that my colleague Kennedy Graham put out a media release challenging our Government to raise human rights concerns with the President of the country formerly known as Burma. I went to that country last year. I was impressed by how many people spoke to me about their hope for peace and […] read more
    March 15, 2013 5:03 pm - 8 Comments
  • Jan Logie

    Earth Rights International - by Jan Logie

    Over the summer I visited some inspiring NGOs active in South East Asia. One that inspired me and really made me think was Earth Rights International. The organisation was started in Thailand by Ka Hsaw Wa, at that time a Burmese refugee, and US lawyer Katharine Redford who, while teaching English, heard about human rights […] read more
    February 8, 2013 9:30 am - 1 Comment
  • Jan Logie

    Free Thai political prisoner Somyot Prueksakasemsuk - by Jan Logie

    Last week I visited Somyot in prison in Bangkok. On the 25th of January 2013, he was sentenced to ten years in jail for publishing a magazine that contained two fictional short stories that the court deemed to be critical of the King. No names were used in these stories and historians gave evidence at […] read more
    February 5, 2013 12:07 pm - 1 Comment
  • Jan Logie

    The Parliamentary week that was, 11 December, for Pacific communities - by Jan Logie

    Parliament has been very busy trying to pass quite a few pieces of relatively uncontentious legislation over the last couple of weeks. Select committees have also been very busy. Wednesday 12th December was the last day that the House sat for the year, which means the various parties made their adjournment speeches. Greens Co-leader Metiria […] read more
    December 17, 2012 4:33 pm - No Comments
  • Jan Logie

    Make your voice count on International Human Rights Day - by Jan Logie

    Today is International Human Rights Day, a day when we can all celebrate our human rights but also make our voices count for those who’s rights are under attack across the world. In ten different libraries across Auckland City today, Amnesty International organised Write For Rights events for people to write letters in support of […] read more
    December 10, 2012 4:52 pm - No Comments
  • Jan Logie

    Unemployment is a human rights issue - by Jan Logie

    The 13,000 rise in unemployment reported in today’s Household Labourforce Survey brings the total number of unemployed New Zealanders to 175,000 – the worst number in 20 year. That represents 7.3% of our population, including 15.6% of Pasifika people and 15.1% of Māori and we know it is also likely to be worse for young […] read more
    November 8, 2012 3:29 pm - 265 Comments
  • Holly Walker

    Bill English wrong about child payment discrimination - by Holly Walker

    The Finance Minister was wrong to tell Parliament that the In-Work Tax Credit doesn’t discriminate against some of our poorest children. read more
    August 24, 2012 3:33 pm - 15 Comments
  • Gareth Hughes

    Should it be a cyber-bullying offence to be offensive? - by Gareth Hughes

    I welcome the Law Commission’s cyber-bullying report which contains recommendations for reducing harm. As anyone who has been through it knows, bullying is a horrible experience and in New Zealand we have had some tragic examples leading to suicides. It’s important that we discuss the problem and come up with solutions that work. The Law […] read more
    August 15, 2012 10:47 am - 19 Comments
  • Holly Walker

    Talking about sex in Turkey - by Holly Walker

    A sensational headline for a rather less racy update from the International Conference of Parliamentarians for Population and Development in Istanbul, where we are discussing gender equality, sexual and reproductive health and rights. read more
    May 25, 2012 6:36 am - 12 Comments
  • Metiria Turei

    Congratulations Keith - by Metiria Turei

    Congratulations Keith. It is great to see Keith recognised for his passionate hard work standing up for human rights both at home and around the world. Keith was awarded Amnesty International Aotearoa’s 2012 Human Rights Defender award over the weekend. We could devote pages to the campaigns, issues and individual cases (not just high profile […] read more
    May 14, 2012 2:51 pm - 4 Comments
  • David Clendon

    Anal-ysis, Corrections Style. - by David Clendon

    Most New Zealanders would agree that we live in a country where human rights are  protected, where we willingly comply with international agreements to treat people fairly and humanely, and civil rights are respected. Most of the time, they would be right.  Unfortunately, it is becoming increasingly evident that in the case of people convicted or even accused of crimes, we are not […] read more
    April 23, 2012 2:27 pm - 3 Comments
  • Keith Locke

    Chogm fails to challenge Sri Lanka on human rights - by Keith Locke

    Human rights was the loser at this year’s Commonwealth Prime Ministers’ conference (GHOGM). Endorsing Sri Lanka to host the next (2013) conference was a slap in the face for those calling for an independent international investigation into the 2009 massacre in northern Sri Lanka and an end to the ongoing persecution of the Tamils. To […] read more
    October 31, 2011 12:17 pm - 5 Comments
  • Catherine Delahunty

    Nasty surprise in Disability Commissioner bill? - by Catherine Delahunty

    The Government has introduced legislation to establish the permanent position of Disability Commissioner at the Human Rights Commission – or has it? read more
    October 25, 2011 10:15 am - 1 Comment
  • Keith Locke

    Mapp’s reassurances on torture fall short - by Keith Locke

    It’s not good enough for Defence Minister Wayne Mapp to say he has “no information” that any of the 58 people arrested on the SAS’s joint operations with the Afghan Crisis Response Unit have been subsequently tortured. He admitted that 15 of them had been sent to facilities run by the Afghan intelligence service, the […] read more
    October 14, 2011 2:15 pm - 5 Comments
  • David Clendon

    Cycling for Habitat - by David Clendon

    Last Saturday I went to Botany for what I thought would be a ‘routine’ event, speaking to members of the public and saying some nice things about Habitat for Humanity.  I’m always happy to support this group, who do great work helping people into decent affordable homes. They managed to build about 50 homes for […] read more
    October 5, 2011 4:45 pm - No Comments
  • Keith Locke

    Retrospective surveillance laws shouldn’t be rammed through Parliament - by Keith Locke

    We should be very worried that the government intends to rush legislation through Parliament next week that could restrict New Zealanders’ ability, under the Bill of Rights, to protect themselves from unreasonable surveillance. To add insult to injury, the legislation will be retrospective, to make legal the behavior of the Police over recent times in […] read more
    September 20, 2011 2:02 pm - 21 Comments
  • Keith Locke

    Palmer Panel soft on Israel’s flotilla raid - by Keith Locke

    It was seen as a feather in New Zealand’s cap when former Prime Minister Sir Geoffrey Palmer was appointed to head the UN Secretary-General’s Panel of Inquiry into the Israeli attack on a flotilla bringing aid to Gaza in May 2010. Unfortunately, the resultant report, released this month, is far from adequate. It supports the […] read more
    September 12, 2011 2:18 pm - 6 Comments
  • Keith Locke

    MPs stunned after seeing “Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields” - by Keith Locke

    With some trepidation I helped organise a showing of “Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields” in the Beehive Theatrette last Tuesday.  It is a shocking film, mainly using cell-phone footage to show what it was like for the 300,000 civilians repeatedly bombed and shelled by the Sri Lankan military in the final weeks of the civil war. […] read more
    August 19, 2011 8:18 am - 23 Comments
  • David Clendon

    Justice Reinvestment – the high cost of prison - by David Clendon

    I took an opportunity yesterday to speak in the Appropriations debate on the ‘moral and fiscal failure’ that is our prison system.  Vote Corrections for 2011/2012 is set at a little over $1.1 billion, about two and a half times what it was a decade ago. That is an enormous amount of money to spend […] read more
    August 10, 2011 9:18 am - 29 Comments
  • Keith Locke

    Breakdown of Burmese ceasefire - by Keith Locke

    On Wednesday, Wellington’s Kachin community arrived in Parliament grounds to protest the increasing violence happening in their home province. Kachin state is the Northern most state in Burma, neighbouring China. The Kachin community told me about the breakdown, last month, of a 17 year ceasefire between the Burmese government and Kachin people. 20,000 people have fled […] read more
    July 29, 2011 2:02 pm - 6 Comments
  • Keith Locke

    The Libyan mess - by Keith Locke

    In March the Greens came out in opposition to the NATO air operations over Libya. We said they would probably prolong Gaddafi’s stay in power by allowing the dictator to present himself as a nationalist, fighting foreign intervention. Four months later we’ve been proved right.   The Western intervention was contrary to the UN Charter and based […] read more
    July 19, 2011 9:35 am - 12 Comments
  • Keith Locke

    Auckland Burmese celebrate democracy leader’s 66th birthday - by Keith Locke

    Yesterday I spoke at an Auckland celebration of the 66th birthday of Burmese democracy leader (and Nobel Peace Prize winner) Aung San Suu Kyi. She is now out of house detention, but the regime closely monitors her movements. On Wednesday she begins a tour around the country, to further test the limits of her freedom. […] read more
    June 20, 2011 3:17 pm - 2 Comments
  • Keith Locke

    Need for War Crimes Investigation in Sri Lanka - by Keith Locke

    It’s pleasing to see Foreign Minister Murray McCully has responded positively to my Parliamentary Question asking if he would support the call by a UN Secretary General’s Panel calling for an independent international investigation into credible allegations of human rights violations during the Sri Lankan civil war, “some of which would amount to war crimes […] read more
    May 16, 2011 8:55 am - 3 Comments
  • Catherine Delahunty

    Family care case continues - by Catherine Delahunty

    In recent months, I’ve been doing what I can to call attention to the case of seven families engaged in a lengthy court battle with the Ministry of Health over their right to be paid to care for disabled family members. These seven families represent thousands of others around the country in the same position. […] read more
    May 4, 2011 4:13 pm - 2 Comments
  • Catherine Delahunty

    Disability and paying carers who are family - by Catherine Delahunty

    This week I hosted a forum at Parliament for a very challenging campaign. I invited all MPs, but only the Green MPs supported it. Maybe the others were all very busy, but many from Labour and National seem to find it hard to meet the families who have called for their help in vain for […] read more
    March 25, 2011 12:23 pm - 2 Comments
  • Catherine Delahunty

    Advertising for a disability champion - by Catherine Delahunty

    I’m delighted to announce that the Human Rights Commission is now advertising the position of Disability Commissioner on their website. People with the relevant skills and passion for inclusion can now apply for the role. I am thrilled that my Bill contributed to this moment, and pleased that the Government has supported the immediate creation […] read more
    March 2, 2011 9:10 am - 7 Comments
  • frog

    Keith Locke: Backbencher of the year - by frog

    The political staff at Fairfax Media rate politicians’ performances in various categories around this time of year.  Here’s what they have to say about our own Keith Locke: Green MP Keith Locke, who has plugged away for years on issues as diverse as human rights, spy agencies, republicanism, immigration, refugees, civil liberties and defence and […] read more
    December 20, 2010 7:14 pm - 4 Comments