Blog | Bants with the Baby Back Benches: Adam of Princes Street Labour

This is the third of our Bants with Baby Back Benches interviews. Through this series we want our readers to get to know the youth leaders of our political parties, ready for our eventual youth leaders debate, and the upcoming election.

This edition is with Adam Brand, the Chair of Princes Street Labour

If you’d instead like to listen to our complete conversation click here

By Liam Davies, interview by Paul Simperingham

Paul started by asking Adam why he chose to join young Labour and why he became Chair.

Adam described his upbringing, stating that he came from a traditional Labour background. He grew up in state housing, built by the first labour government. Adam first entered into the political sphere when he started studying. In 2017, he got ‘knee deep’ in campaigning for the election that saw Jacinda Ardern become Prime Minister. When telling Paul why he became Chair of the uni group he said that it wasn’t really his decision. Due to the previous Chair leaving the group he was ‘tossed the role.’ This, however, has not lowered his resolve and enthusiasm for campaigning with the group during this election period.

Next Adam was asked what he saw as the role of the Labour youth wing, and how it relates to the Labour Party.

The role, as Adam put it, is an intermediary between youth/students and the party. He further stated that another role was to be a ‘Pain in the ass’ for the party. By this, Adam referred to holding the main party to account on issues affecting students, such as climate change, mental health and education. During elections, both national and local, the youth wing also campaigns with incumbent and hopeful MPs in their respective electorates.

Why is youth engagement so low, and how can it be increased?

Adam started by saying that there is no simple cause or solution to this problem. However, he goes on to say that politics can be inaccessible to some. He believes this is driven by a lack of civics education in schools, where youth don’t learn a basic understanding of how the system works. Adam further says that it can be a lack of habit. This is why Young Labour has a policy that would lower the voting age to 16. Citing studies, Adam said this policy would help create a voting habit from a younger age when young people are still in school. If you vote once, you are more likely to create a voting habit; this is part of why he thinks older people are more likely to vote consistently.

Possibly the most important question Paul asked: Why should young people vote for Labour this election? How will students be better off if Labour is in government in 2020?

If Labour could form a government without New Zealand First, Adam believes that they would be able to focus on issues that matter to students; things like climate change and electric transport.Policies that will affect students in more direct ways include increasing money for universities, increasing the minimum wage, and unlocking education so people can retrain in new careers post-covid. Furthermore, Adam said housing is another policy area that Labour will work on if re-elected. This includes policy around renting and flats, of which many students reside; insulation, fire alarms and leaks will be addressed and incorporated.

Labour if given the chance would certainly implement many policies meant to benefit students. The question is… Will you vote for them come September 16 2020?

Come see Adam debate the other youth leaders at Baby Back Benches event! While it has been delayed due to lockdown, to keep up on updates event info can be found here

Blog | Bants with the Baby Back Benches: Felix of Young ACT

This is the fourth of our Bants with Baby Back Benches interviews. Through this series we want our readers to get to know the youth leaders of our political parties, ready for our eventual youth leaders debate, and the upcoming election.

This edition is with Felix Poole, the President of Young ACT NZ

If you’d instead like to listen to our complete conversation click here

By Paul Simperingham

PCC

So first of all, how did you get involved with Young ACT?

Felix  

I got involved all the way back in 2017. There wasn’t really a Young ACT or an ACT on campus at that point. So, in my second year, I decided that I’d start ACT on campus. It was just me and seven other people in a room I think, and we just kind of started and it went from there. We talked first at clubs expo and just started building up the group and supporting the party, volunteering that kind of thing.

PCC

Had you always been an ACT supporter?

Felix  

Um, no, actually when I was around 16 or 15 I used to be quite an avid Green supporter and I think that throughout high school, you know, I got a little bit smarter and became an ACT supporter. 

But I was always political growing up, I don’t know if you know him but, a lot of people seem to know my brother Jasper, and he’s very political. So we have all sorts of debates at the dinner table of our family, and so that’s how politics began for me. Then personally it grew into something that went beyond the dinner table and became part of my life.

PCC

What was it that actually drew you to ACT? What was it that changed at 16 or 17?

Felix  

I think I always liked the idea of freedom and free-market economics. I generally supported socially liberal ideas. Once I developed those opinions I kind of just, looked at the parties and said, what party represents me and what I believe in, and the ACT Party was that party.

PCC

So what is the actual relationship between Young ACT and the main party? What is the role of Young ACT?

Felix  

ACT doesn’t have any control over Young ACT, we’re like an independent organization that is operated by a bunch of very enthusiastic people. But you know, we do coordinate with them, we do ask for advice, and then they do help us with some things. They will, of course, allow us to use their branding to a certain extent.

This different kind of relationship means that, for example, we can do things that the party doesn’t agree with, for example, we had a policy to legalize drugs. So we pushed that quite hard on campus and it was quite successful. We made the news because we told reporters that we were going to give out free nangs at university, so the news got fired up and made a story about us and sent reporters to clubs expos. We weren’t going to give out nangs at university, but the fact reporters came there and reported on our policy was great. 

In general, the role of the youth wing is to make sure that young people’s voices are heard within the party. Political parties play a very important role, they pick Prime Ministers, they pick what issues make it to the forefront of elections, they pick which policies get support, and all these things that parties do affect our country greatly. So youth wings are about making sure young people’s voices are heard in those circles because they absolutely need to be.

PCC

So if you were to talk to a student on campus or just a young person in general, what would be your selling points? What would you tell them to get their vote in the 2020 election?

Felix  

If you want a right-wing government, but you also support quite social liberal policies the ACT party is for you. We’re kind of like National except, we don’t care if you smoke pot, we support euthanasia, Seymour is pro-choice, that sort of thing. So if you want to make sure your vote goes reliably to socially progressive issues while supporting right-wing government then ACT is the party for you, and a lot of people are sympathetic to that position. So that’s how I sell ACT to young people.

PCC

So if ACT makes it into government post-2020 general election–

Felix  

There’s a very low chance of that happening, unfortunately. 

PCC

well if it were to happen, post 2020 election what kind of New Zealand would a university student see? What kind of change would they experience in their day to day life? 

Felix  

The biggest thing would be RMA (Resource Management Act) reform, which would be a change in the supply of housing and the change in the way our cities and infrastructure are built. The biggest thing that young people care about is housing and it’s very easy to say, we’ll just build more houses or regulate it so that your rent doesn’t go up. But the reality is that those things have other effects that make student housing worse. Rent controls, make the quality of student housing worse, and they don’t fix the supply aspect so the prices remain high.

RMA reform is about an increase in infrastructure, an increase in the density of housing around Auckland, the increase in the number of houses being built on the edges of Auckland. That way making it so landlords have to compete for students and for people to rent their properties, so rent goes down. I think most political parties agree with RMA reform. Very few have the political will to do it, but ACT has it as a number one priority. If we go into coalition or any agreement with any party, it would be a number one priority. 

Other things that students might see is an end to fees-free, and low taxes, or at least all taxes remaining the same. One thing that students probably don’t think about is the cost that debt is going to have on their future lives because we’re going to take out billions of dollars in debt. Probably $140 billion in debt and that debt is going to have to be paid back by us. I think that an ACT Government would make it a high priority to reduce that debt. If we come out of university, and they’re still stacking on the debt, then we’re going to be paying interest on that for years. We’re going to be paying the superannuation fees for generations that already have heaps of property and money accumulated over the decades.

PCC

So youth turnout to vote is typically lower than older people, and it’s generally trending down. First of all, why do you think this is and secondly, what do you think we should do about it?

Felix  

It’s hard to say why it is. I think it’s probably something to do with young people feeling like they aren’t adequately represented by people in politics, that their vote won’t make a difference that their interests aren’t aligned with people who lead the country. I think broadly, that take on politics is actually very much true because the people in our parliament they all buy their own property, and they are very rich and wealthy, their lives aren’t in any way comparable to the lives of students. So, I think students, are somewhat correct in assuming that they don’t have their best interests at heart. I hope to see that change. I think the only way to get young people involved in politics is to have more young people in politics, and in positions of power and authority to make sure young people’s interests and young people’s concerns are heard.

Which I think is a bit of a chicken before the egg scenario because if you have more young people in Parliament, the more young people get involved in politics. But like, which one of those things comes first, the young people getting involved in the politics of the young MPs? I think, the ACT party has been quite successful in this area, we have a couple of young candidates, and we have one of the youngest, party leaders in Parliament. We have Brooke, who’s our number two who’s also very young. I think the ACT party is quite forward-thinking in that regard, putting young people in positions of power and authority within the party.

PCC

In May of this year, Young ACT was embroiled in a sexual harassment scandal and I believe there’s an investigation going on now. If you were talking to a prospective member of Young ACT on campus, and they were worried about joining the organization, what would you have to say to them?

Felix  

This an investigation going on right now and I can’t say anything about it until the investigation is finished. But Young ACT will move forward, we take these things seriously, and we have taken these things seriously.

PCC

Will we be seeing you in Parliament anytime soon? Is that an ambition?

Felix  

No, I don’t think so. I want to, you know, finish my degree and have a couple of years in the private sector stuff before I do anything.

The ACT party if given the chance would certainly implement many policies meant to benefit students. The question is… Will you vote for them come September 16 2020?

 

Come see Felix debate the other youth leaders at Baby Back Benches event! While it has been delayed due to lockdown, to keep up on updates event info can be found here

 

This interview has been edited for length and clarity

Blog | Bants with the Baby Back Benches: Jay of Young New Zealand First

This is the second of our Bants with Baby Back Benches interviews. Through this series we want our readers to get to know the youth leaders of our political parties, ready for our eventual youth leaders debate, and the upcoming election.

This edition is with Jay McLaren-Harris the chairperson of Young New Zealand First.

By Paul Simperingham

 

PCC

First question, how did you get into the business you’re in? What drew you to New Zealand First?

Jay  

I grew up in Dargaville, and when the Northland by-election happened and Winston won the election, that was kind of my first taste of politics. As a young person from a small town like Dargaville, we never saw politics as a possibility for a young Maori boy from Dargaville. But then once we learned about Winston that’s when my taste for politics started to tingle, then ever since I’ve just been involved in the background, until last year, when things started to pick up.

What drew me into New Zealand First, I think was how people perceive New Zealand First as being a very racist, very older generation party. I went to one of the rallies and I saw the total opposite. I saw diversity, I saw young people, I saw everybody was active and energized. So it wasn’t what the punters were saying. And that’s really what drew me.

Look… I’ll prove you wrong with facts and fiction. So what drew me to New Zealand First, was not only Winston. I mean, who doesn’t love Winston Peters? But it was also the fact that this is a party based on common sense values, based on common-sense policies, based on common sense principles.

PCC

Why should a young person or a student at the coming 2020 election consider NZ First for their tick?

Jay  

Well, let me stop you right there. You said, young person and students. Those two things don’t go together. Young New Zealand First has definitely pushed that when we talk about young people it’s not just university students that go out to political events. It’s also the farmer, the roofer, the apprentice, the supermarket operator, you know, these young people matter as well. 

But I think it says it all in our slogan ‘back your future’. When we invest $3 billion into our region’s this isn’t just investing in farmers and investing in infrastructure. What it’s doing is it’s investing into a further generation or farmers, a further generation of infrastructure workers. So if you want a party that supports actually, instead of a young person having to leave the region, to go to university to learn about infrastructure, how about we invest in infrastructure in a small town, so that young person doesn’t have to leave. 

We have other policies around immigration. You know, I think young New Zealanders are now fed up with how immigration has been an absolute joke in previous years from both sides. Not just from National and not just from Labour, but from both of them. New Zealand First is campaigning on the immigration portfolio because we need to get our shit together. I think young people are aware of these things.

With New Zealand First, we’ve got a mixture of young people at our convention, so we had a lot of people from the regions, and the advice and the feedback was, we need more investment into the regions. We need to make sure our roads are maintained and that our infrastructure is supported. We need to make sure that our education is supported. I went to my old Intermediate School a few months ago, it still had the same principal, he said to me, “Jay, I need help.” It’s so hard when the education sector forgets that our region’s are not just numbers on a sheet or names on a piece of paper. These are lives and human beings. I saw how tired that principle was, and I know how hard-working that principal is. So when our young people go and vote this election on September 19, back your future, back provincial growth fund, back immigration and make sure that New Zealand First gets that portfolio, back the ability to bring in change around our education sector in our education system. Ensure that we support all New Zealanders going forward in life.

As young people, we need to back our future, so that 10 years down the track we live in a society that is flourishing and that is sustainable. That actually has the infrastructure to support a growing economy, but also a growing society. So if you want, an insurance policy and an insurance vote come September 19th, party vote New Zealand First. We’ll ensure that the stupid left ideas don’t get through, but also the far-right stupid ideas don’t get through.

PCC

Related to that, is that also part of why Young New Zealand First isn’t located on campus? As one of the few youth wings that don’t have a presence on campus.

Jay  

We made a decision earlier on in the year that part of our strategy was that if we were truly young New Zealand First, and that we put New Zealanders first, then we had to break away from the rhetoric of thinking that you have to be a skinny white kid from university to join a youth wing. That’s absolutely not true, and it’s absolutely wrong. The views of other young people matter just as much as the ones that attend university.

We needed to ensure that youth wings, especially young NZ first, weren’t dominated by university students. That we need to have a balance and that we’ve restructured to ensure that we provide regional representation, not Auckland central representation and a whole bunch of uni kids. Don’t get me wrong. Uni kids are fantastic and bravo to them for doing what they do, but actually there’s so many other young people out there whose voices do matter and aren’t necessarily heard by youth political wings, and hence why we’re working around the clock to ensure that we get youth interest up. 

PCC

A question more specific to New Zealand First, it’s often referred to as a party that appeals more to older people. Why do you think that is? What do you think people misunderstand about your party?

Jay

Oh, look, New Zealand First is one of the most diverse parties I’ve ever seen. At our recent convention, there were so many young people like I said. I’m super proud of the team that were represented at convention this year given the circumstances of COVID. New Zealand First is not a party of great power, we are a party of New Zealanders that are just here to put New Zealand and New Zealanders first. Yes, we do have members that are much more senior than a lot of us, but that’s fine. Because they’re New Zealanders too, but we also have a massive mixture of other New Zealanders, be that middle class, be that lower class, be that youth, be that middle age. They represent New Zealand for us in New Zealand. So I absolutely disregard the idea that New Zealand First is a grey power party. We are not. We are a party of New Zealanders that are doing some fantastic work when it comes to our country.

PCC

That’s all I really have for you, is there anything else you’d particularly like to highlight or speak on?

Jay

I will say, you know, the deputy prime minister really supports young people. I spent the weekend with him, just campaigning and visiting markets and whatnot, and he’s one of the most genuine people you will ever meet. He will listen to young people, that’s the most heartwarming thing. You know, I bumped into a bunch of visitors and think they were from South Africa, and I was saying to them in Which country do you see the Deputy Prime Minister walking around a Saturday and Sunday market, talking to a whole bunch of young people? They said, “Oh, I don’t know. Never Not in Africa”. I think we live in such an amazing and lucky country that people like the Deputy Prime Minister, have the ability to connect with young people. 

Young New Zealand First, as I said, we’re fired up, we’re excited and we’re ready to go. Come September 19, let’s vote New Zealand First.

New Zealand First if given the chance would certainly implement many policies meant to benefit students. The question is… Will you vote for them come September 16 2020?

 

Come see Jay debate the other youth leaders at Baby Back Benches event! While it has been delayed due to lockdown, to keep up on updates event info can be found here

 

This interview has been edited for length and clarity

Blog | Bants with the Baby Back Benches: Natalie of Greens on Campus

This is the first of our Bants with Baby Back Benches interviews. Through this series we want our readers to get to know the youth leaders of our political parties, ready for our eventual youth leaders debate, and the upcoming election.

If you’d instead like to listen to our complete conversation click here

By Liam Davies

On the day of our interview, Natalie, Co-Convenor of Greens on Campus, and I attended our mutual friend’s campaign launch, for a party I will not mention and of which neither of us belong. Having arrived at the launch and after sitting through a couple of speeches, our friend on stage called Natalie out as his ‘Greenie friend in the audience.’ We soon decided the politics were not for us and left to record this interview. 

I started by asking Natalie why she entered into youth politics, and in particular why the Greens Party of Aotearoa New Zealand (The Greens)?

Natalie cited an anger and indignance with injustices that she saw throughout New Zealand. Having come to the conclusion that ranting was not constructive she saw politics as a vessel to create change. In particular, Natalie chose the Greens party due to its constitution. The party’s constitution is made up of five main tenants that aligned with her values; namely non-violence, democracy, ecological wisdom, social justice and upholding Ti Tiriti values. As a natural ‘leftie’ these values and their uncompromising attitude towards social justice and climate change issues won her over.

At this stage an airshow flew over our heads, Natalie commented ‘I thought we had abolished airplanes?’. Classic greenie rhetoric.

Following on, I asked what function she saw the club on campus as having, and how they related to the larger party.

A strong message throughout Natalie’s answer was that they provided a voice for youth, rangatahi and uni students. In particular, the club is able to speak to the values of these groups and take their issues to MPs. Youth engagement was stressed here too. The club gets Green MPs and representatives on campus for various events. This helps bring down the wall between students and politicians. Post-interview, Natalie also referred to the club as the Greens ‘Fan Club’ on campus; her enthusiasm when she made this remark makes me think it is one of the clubs most important functions.
The party’s voter base is young compared to other parties. Due to this high percentage of youth votes, I asked Natalie how we might increase youth voter turnout?

Natalie’s answer was similar to her answers in the previous question. It is all about making MPs and politicians approachable. This lowers feelings of intimidation, while increasing feelings of trust. She further mentioned teaching young people that their votes do make a difference. This could be done through civics education, which our current schooling system neglects. Natalie mentioned that under our MMP system, a vote goes much further than people assume.

Possibly the most important question I asked, from Natalies perspective was: Why should young people vote for Greens this election? How will students be better off if the Greens are in government?

Generally, Natalie referred to the main tenets of the party. This was followed by a particular discussion around their emphasis on climate change. We will be ‘buggered’ if we don’t put more effort in this area. A policy that Natalie was quite excited about was UBI for students of $325 a week. This will replace the current student allowance, however, students will generally come out of it $100 a week better off. Additionally, it will also apply to parttime and post-grad students. Creating a stronger safety net. Increasing funding for mental health facilities in universities. Students will also find themselves better off as the Greens hope to expand fees-free into apprenticeships (Stronger than labours current policy). Natalie stated that these policies are about investing in young people.

The Greens party if given the chance would certainly implement many policies meant to benefit students. The question is… Will you vote for them come September 16 2020?

 

Come see Natalie debate the other youth leaders at Baby Back Benches event! While it has been delayed due to lockdown to keep up on updates, event info can be found here

Blog | The Struggle for Change: Is it Time?

The widespread protest regarding the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minnesotan police officers has brought the issue of systemic racism – both in America and NZ – into the open. Can we make a change? New Zealand’s history of social activism suggests yes.

By Nick Howell

The killing of African-American George Floyd on May 25 has brought the issue of systemic racism squarely into the spotlight, with many seeing how differently minorities are treated in the Western world. Many are showing their frustrations at systemic injustice through wide-scale protest and rioting, mostly throughout the cities of America – but in Auckland as well. Others are blaming the divisive rhetoric of U.S. President Donald Trump. Academics like Robert Dahl and Moana Jackson argue that racism is a deeply rooted phenomenon intrinsic to both the New Zealand and American experience, with Trump being all but a symptom of the unequal treatment that has been afforded to minorities since colonisation [1]. The confronting nature of the rioting and protesting in America right now inevitably leads to one asking what should be done. This piece briefly explores and compares the histories of New Zealand and the United States and traces how that history moulds the climate of today. Is the time ripe for change?
     

Auckland Black Lives Matter Rally Held In Solidarity With U.S. Marches
Protest in Auckland: June 1st     

 

History:

African-Americans in the U.S. and Maori in New Zealand are both prominent minorities who suffer worse outcomes in nearly every available statistic: from life expectancy to net worth. Much research has been given to this end, with a near consensus agreeing that institutional racism and violence is largely to blame. Consider two notable facts: that both groups were deprived of the right to vote through the legal mechanisms of the time; and that they were economically deprived – African-Americans through slavery and Jim Crow laws, and Maori through stolen land. It follows that they have struggled to recover; the legal systems of both the U.S. and New Zealand have offered little recourse. These facts are only a snapshot of injustice but clearly show the relationship between historical injustice and current inequality. The below graph shows the dire economic situation for Maori when compared to other groups in New Zealand.

ethnic
Source: Stats NZ

Average Maori net worth in 2016 was $23,000 – one fifth the Pakeha net worth of $114,000 [2].  Such economic disadvantage has inevitably manifested itself in worse outcomes for Maori: higher crime, lower life expectancy, and other negative factors. So what has been done to address such a gross discrepancy? Surprisingly – little. 

 

Current Policy:

Current statutorily embedded protections appear to be insufficient in safeguarding against discrimination. Consider the Human Rights Act 1993 and the Employment Relations Act 2000 – both created to protect against discrimination, especially in the workplace [3].  However, Statistics show that Maori among other minorities still suffers significant discrimination in the workplace [4].  Such discrimination may not even be visible but implicit in others behaviour. The U.S. study “Are Emily and Greg More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination” revealed how this works in practice [5].  This study was devoted to supposed equal opportunity employers – in seeing exactly how equal they really were during the hiring process. Their results showed that white Americans had a 50 percent higher chance of receiving a call-back than African-Americans when applying for jobs. What is startling is that African-Americans with significant expertise or qualifications were still less sought after than white Americans without such qualifications. In Aotearoa 10 per cent of Maori report discrimination in the workplace compared to 4.4 per cent of Pakeha suggesting such issues could be commonplace here [6]. 

 

Why is current policy failing?

The inadequacy of current anti-discrimination law is evident. Its shortcomings exemplify just why it is so important that change radiates upwards. Society changes quicker than law – Parliamentary procedure has proved to be sluggish and often not reflective of the wants of the many. Much policy that is now considered normal began with a groundswell of support mobilised by the people, including the right for women to vote, gay marriage and the minimum wage [7].  The universal groundswell of recognition and support regarding racial injustice may be able to go some way towards alleviating the systemic injustice suffered by both Maori and African-American communities. Already in the days following the death of George Floyd, popular movements have put forward policy they believe is necessary in combatting black-discrimination at the hands of police. Campaign Zero, a U.S. anti-police brutality movement, has put forward 8 policies that they say reduces police violence by 72 per cent: such policy including a ban on choking and requiring de-escalation [8].  Former U.S. President Barack Obama recently spoke out in arguing that now is the time to manifest momentum into real change, stating, “eventually, aspirations have to be translated into specific laws and institutional practices.” [9] To place all efforts into criminal justice reform ignores the pipeline through which lack of economic opportunity manifests itself into crime. Whilst undeniable that minorities are unduly discriminated against throughout all stages of the judicial system – those wishing to create change should focus efforts into providing opportunity. [10]. That is to say that, rather than placing the hospital at the bottom of the cliff, they should help in preventing the cliff being jumped in the first place.

 

Historical Precedent:

New Zealand has a long history of social activism in the face of racial injustice. The Polynesian Panthers, modelled on the American Black Panther movement, were active in the early 1970s. Polynesian families were discriminated against and forcibly deported from the nation amidst fierce nationalism and a failing economy. Although many Polynesian families had set up home here and contributed to the fabric of the nation, they were no longer wanted. Police officers would conduct so-called ‘dawn raids’, where they would enter households in the middle of night or early morning – unceremoniously cuffing them and shipping them off [11]. The Polynesian Panthers recognised the injustice that was at hand and retaliated in kind. They conducted their own form of dawn raids – on the politicians responsible for authorising such actions. Politicians quickly became self-aware of the brutal nature of what they were doing, and soon afterwards the dawn raids on Polynesian communities ceased [12].

Polynesian Panthers also played a principle role amongst other actors in the anti-Apartheid protests that rocked the nation in the 1980s. Violent protests in opposition to a Springbok rugby tour in New Zealand forced its cancellation. Mass movements made their voice and stance known – that the systemic discrimination against blacks in South Africa had no place in any nation.

New Zealand South Africa Hamilton History
Anti-Apartheid Protests in NZ

 

Manifesting through Momentum:

Those who wish to make an impactful change will need to mobilise through activism and protest. An insightful study recently showed that non-violent protests with 3.5 per cent of the nation’s population involved have – never – failed to get what they want [13].  In other words, the more people involved, the higher the chance of success. This wisdom was known by names we now prophesise, like the civil rights leaders Gandhi and Martin Luther King. The success of any movement will depend on the breadth of its appeal and the maintenance of its momentum. The events of the coming months will decide whether any silver lining can be gained from the tragic death of George Floyd. The strong history of Kiwi activism and the Auckland protest of June 1st suggests that many are hungry for change in New Zealand. Already, a proposed arming of the police has been cancelled – with widespread petitioning and indignation likely having a significant role in prevention [14].  Particular criticism was given to what many believe to be the disproportionate use of police violence against Maori and Pasifika communities [15]. It remains to be seen whether more comprehensive progress will be made in the struggle against systemic inequity. But, the increasing political awareness and involvement of many Kiwis may go a long way towards succeeding in such struggles.

facebook-post
Women fighting for the right to vote

 

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily conflict nor conform with those of the Public Policy Club.

 

Sources:

[1] https://e-tangata.co.nz/comment-and-analysis/moana-jackson-understanding-racism-in-this-country/
[2] http://archive.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/people_and_communities/Net%20worth/ethnicity.aspx
[3] https://employsure.co.nz/guides/employment-contracts-legislation/equal-opportunity/
[4] http://ftp.iza.org/dp7504.pdf
[5] https://www.nber.org/papers/w9873
[6] http://ftp.iza.org/dp7504.pdf

[7] https://hbr.org/2017/01/how-protests-become-successful-social-movements
[8] https://8cantwait.org/

[9]https://medium.com/@BarackObama/how-to-make-this-moment-the-turning-point-for-real-change-9fa209806067

[10] Kim Workman, Maori Over-Representation in the Criminal Justice System – Does Structural Discrimination Have Anything to Do with It?

[11] http://dawnraidsnz.weebly.com/

[12] https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10391310

[13] https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20190513-it-only-takes-35-of-people-to-change-the-world

[14]https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jun/09/new-zealand-drops-armed-police-trial-after-public-concern

[15]https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/green-mp-weighs-into-racism-debate-saying-m-ori-and-pasifika-victims-unfairly-targeted-nz-police

Images (top to bottom):

[1] https://images.app.goo.gl/M5wXApUyMKwzdB377

[2]http://archive.stats.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/people_and_communities/Net%20worth/ethnicity.aspx#gsc.tab=0

[3] https://images.app.goo.gl/PxCBpFvd8rPbENcj8

[4] https://images.app.goo.gl/B5JAK5WzdYJRWEiN6