Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Bunkle to seek members bill on exemplary damages

Bunkle to seek members bill on exemplary damages

14 May 2001

Phillida Bunkle Alliance MP today announced she will seek to introduce a Member’s Bill to change the legal criteria for exemplary damages following the Court of Appeal decision on Patient A.

The Court of Appeal decision released yesterday said that exemplary damages could only apply when the person persisted in the risky action despite knowing the harm it would cause.

"This sets the standard so high it effectively prevents actions for such damages," said Phillida Bunkle Alliance MP.

The minority opinion by Judge Thomas said, "To require the wrongdoer to be subjectively aware of the risk is to effectively … eliminate any sensible notion that exemplary damages can be awarded in negligence, however flagrant the negligent conduct might be."

Phillida Bunkle said, "Such a standard is virtually impossible to reach. Judge Cartwright found in her recommendations that the standard should not depend on what a professional person happens to know about the risks, but on what a properly trained and competent professional ought to have known.

"The issue should be about professional standards and competence not on subjective frame of mind.

"The law needs to be changed to protect the health and wellbeing of people and risks resulting from a lack of professional standards is not acceptable," said Phillida Bunkle.

Phillida Bunkle also today successfully introduced a motion that was passed by the House, expressing concern and sympathy for Patient A.

The motion read "This House expresses its concern and sympathy for the woman known as 'Patient A', whose cancer and subsequent disability resulted from repeated misread cervical smears some of which were undertaken by the National Cervical Screening Programme."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Sir Michael Cullen’s Tax Reform

To ordinary wage and salary earners who (a) watch a slice of their gross income being taxed every week via PAYE and who also (b) pay GST on every single thing they buy, there has been something quite surreal about the centre-right’s angry and anguished reactions to the Tax Working Group’s final report... More>>


89 Cents An Hour: Govt Plans Fix For Minimum Wage For People With Disabilities

IHC is delighted that the Government is looking into replacing the Minimum Wage Exemption (MWE) with a wage supplement to ensure people with disabilities are paid at least the minimum wage. More>>


Te Waihanga: New Independent Commission To Tackle Infrastructure Issues

The New Zealand Infrastructure Commission – Te Waihanga – will be established as an Autonomous Crown Entity to carry out two broad functions – strategy and planning and procurement and delivery support. More>>


Auckland Action Against Poverty: Motels Profit From Housing Crisis

A single motel which charges up to $1,500 per week per room has received over $3 million worth of Government funds to provide emergency assistance, despite never having a Code Compliance Certificate – an offence under the Building Act – and receiving a series of longstanding complaints from occupants... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Alleged China Relations Crisis

If New Zealand’s relations with China are ‘deteriorating’ then you still need a microscope to detect the signs... More>>


Environment: Government To End Tenure Review

“Tenure review has resulted in parcels of land being added to the conservation estate, but it has also resulted in more intensive farming and subdivision on the 353,000 ha of land which has been freeholded. This contributed to major landscape change and loss of habitat for native plants and animals,” said Eugenie Sage. More>>


Bell Tolls: Big Changes, Grand Mergers Planned For Vocational Training

“At a time when we’re facing critical skill shortages, too many of our polytechnics and institutes of technology are going broke... More>>


Sallies' State Of The Nation: Progress Stalled In Reducing Inequality

The report shows a lack of tangible progress in key areas including record levels of household debt and a growing gap in educational achievement between poorer and more well off communities. More>>





InfoPages News Channels