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City Voice: Petition to cut jobless

By Grant Fleming

WAINUIOMATA scientist Julie Waring hopes to get 250,000 signatures on a petition calling for the government to reduce unemployment to 1% by the year 2004.

By doing so she would force the government to hold a referendum on the issue.

While the results would be non-binding, she hopes that public support for the petition would force the government to take greater action on the issue.

Waring was motivated to start the petition after becoming frustrated with what she perceives as MPs' preoccupation with trivial issues.

She hopes to "raise public awareness on the negative effects of unemployment", including crime, youth suicide and depression.

Waring has witnessed the effects of unemployment on family and friends around her and sees very clearly the difficulty and pain that people go through. She says that "seeing people's faces and hearing their stories" while collecting signatures in the Wainuiomata Mall is enough to convince her that what she is doing is worthwhile.

- To help collect signatures, write to J Waring, PO Box 42 009, Wainuiomata; or ring City Voice, 385 6711 x 814.

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