Parliament

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

 

NZ keen to ensure protection of genuine refugees

Dalziel addresses UNHCR committee meeting

New Zealand is keen to ensure that the protection of genuine refugees is not weakened by those abusing the international asylum system, Immigration Minister Lianne Dalziel told a UN committee meeting in Geneva last night.

Lianne Dalziel is representing New Zealand as a first time member of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Executive Committee (ExCom).

In her address to the ExCom meeting, Lianne Dalziel highlighted the need to encourage more nations to sign up to the UN Convention on the Status of Refugees, and to deal with abuse of the asylum system.

"When I listen to other countries' interventions I note that the problems we face in New Zealand are on a much smaller scale - some countries host a number of refugees that almost match our entire population. However, that being said, there are lessons that can be learned from the New Zealand experience.

"For many years New Zealand has been the victim of thousands of manifestly unfounded claims which have effectively clogged up our system of determination and appeal. In our first term of office, the New Zealand government was able to reduce the first level determination backlog by more than 80%.

"Even in a small country like ours, the New Zealand Refugee Status Appeals Authority has estimated the potential cost of the appeals backlog that has developed as a result at NZ$30 million. Although I consider the figure to be somewhat over-stated, . . . it makes the point about the level of resource that is potentially diverted from refugee resettlement programmes, which ought to be the priority of a receiving country."

Lianne Dalziel said she was heartened by proposals to simplify the asylum system by identifying countries of improbable source, but said there needed to be a mechanism that identified genuine claims.

She told the meeting that New Zealand had committed to alleviating regional resettlement pressures by allocating part of the annual refugee quota to mandated refugees in Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand, as well as passing laws that introduced severe penalties for people smuggling.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

PM's Press Conference: Pike Re-Entry Agency

At today's post-cabinet press conference Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was joined by Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little to announce plans for the new agency for re-entry of the mine.

The Pike River Recovery Agency, Te Kahui Whakamana Rua Tekau ma Iwa, will be officially established on 31 January 2018 and will work with the Pike River families with the intention of manned entry of the drift before March 2019. More>>

 

Foreign Affairs: Patrick Gower Interviews Jacinda Ardern

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says discussions have already begun on how to bring climate change refugees into New Zealand under a Pacific seasonal employment plan... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Centre Right’s Love Of ‘Nanny State’

You’d almost think it was 2005 again. That was a time when the rugged individualists of the centre-right were being beset by government regulations on the nature of light-bulbs, the size of shower heads, the junk food available at school tuck shops and other such essentials... More>>

Speaking Of Transport: Public Engagement On Wellington Scenarios

“Our work on possible solutions for Wellington’s transport future is ongoing, but has progressed to the stage where we’re ready to share our ideas with the public and seek their feedback to help guide our next steps...” More>>

ALSO:

Parental Leave: National's Time-Sharing Change Fails

National has proposed a change to the Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Bill that would allow both parents to take paid parental leave at the same time, if that is what suits them best. More>>

ALSO:

Train Free Thursday: Workers Strike To Defend Terms Of Employment

"They signed up to these conditions a year ago when they got the contract for Wellington's rail services. Now they're trying to increase profits by squeezing frontline workers." More>>

ALSO:

Seclusion: Ombudsman Emphasises Importance Of Monitoring

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says that while there have been changes to the Education (Update) Amendment Act 2017 to prohibit the use of seclusion, the report is an important reminder of the importance of regular monitoring of schools. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election