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Dunne Attacks Plan To Scrap Race Relations Office

United New Zealand leader, Hon Peter Dunne, has strongly attacked suggestions that the Race Relations Conciliator's office should be scrapped and its functions absorbed within the Human Rights Commission.

"This would be an extraordinarily backward step and a clear insult to New Zealand's ethnic communities."

"It would prove beyond all remaining doubt that this Government is interested only in biculturalism and has no real commitment to New Zealand becoming a genuine multicultural society."

"If the Government really believed that the functions of the Race Relations Conciliator could be best be carried out within the framework of the Human Rights Commission, rather than a separate office, then it would take the next logical step and abolish the Waitangi Tribunal as well and place its functions within the Human Rights Commission, but there is no suggestion that it likely to happen."

"This proposal makes clear the Government is far more interested in promoting a bi-cultural society than a genuinely inclusive multicultural country," Mr Dunne says.

Mr Dunne says that it seems whenever the Race Relations Office upsets politicians it is threatened with being scrapped.

"During the last Government, Mr Henare threatened to dump the office because he felt it was not sufficiently pro-Maori."

"Now less than a week after the Race Relations Conciliator upset the Prime Minister by criticising the Government's plans to include Treaty of Waitangi clauses in social legislation, we have these reports of the latest moves to scuttle the office."

"The Race Relations Conciliator's main fault appears to be that he is being too successful in promoting multicultural New Zealand in these politically correct times," Mr Dunne says.

Ends


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