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Sector Needs A Say On Charities Bill Number Two

Sector Needs A Say On Charities Bill Number Two

ACT New Zealand Deputy Leader and Social Welfare Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman today urged the Labour Government to extend the consultation timeframe for its second version of the Charities Bill.

"It is completely irresponsible that the Government is attempting to railroad through this wholesale regulation of the 30,000-strong charitable sector before Christmas," Dr Newman said.

"Labour got the first draft of the Bill so wrong that almost the entire charitable sector vehemently opposed it. Now the Government has had a second go - but is trying to exclude interested parties in its haste to ram it through into law.

"The Charities Bill has been significantly re-written, and all submitters involved in the first draft must be given the opportunity to consult on the second - inviting a selected group to consult on this important re-write is unacceptable.

"Labour appears more concerned with getting this Bill passed before election year, than in getting it right. If this were not the case, the Government would extend the submission and consultation timeframe in order to discover and amend any flaws in this re-written Bill.

"Once again, I am calling on the Labour Government to follow proper procedure and open this re-written Bill for full and open submissions, to allow the public a real chance to have its say.

"Then, and only then, can we be assured that this is a workable law that will benefit everyone - not a legislative nightmare that will prevent the charitable sector doing its good work," Dr Newman said.

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