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Mallard should explain intent of State Sector Act

Mallard should explain intent of State Sector Act

National Party Maori Affairs spokesman Gerry Brownlee is calling on State Services Minister Trevor Mallard to explain the intent of the State Sector Act under which many public servants are employed.

“The Race Relations Minister, who was tasked with reviewing Labour’s race-based policies, has said that he takes no responsibility for Treaty clauses in the job criteria of public servants and that it is the CEOs responsibility.

“But Mr Mallard is also the State Services Minister who has oversight of the State Services Act 1988, which clearly states ‘a good employer’ ‘gives recognition of - (i) the aims and aspirations of the Maori people; and (ii) the employment requirements of the Maori people; and (iii) the need for greater involvement of the Maori people in public service’.

“While it’s true there is no specific Treaty mention, Mr Mallard should explain the effect of this clause.

“Surely the effect is that State Sector bosses are expected to make special provisions for Maori staff ahead of non-Maori.

“Mr Mallard was asked by the Prime Minister to tidy up needless race-based clauses. As a show of good faith he could have started with the 17-year-old State Sector Act, which has been actively misused over the past five years.

“National believes public servants and public service managers should be treating all people equally regardless of race, except in specialist areas like the Treaty Negotiations Office where a knowledge of the Treaty is critical to the job.

“Last year Labour made a lot of noise about its review of race based policies. Sadly we now know there was never any intention to deliver,” says Mr Brownlee.

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