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Labour scratches surface on race review

Gerry Brownlee MP
National Party Maori Affairs Spokesman

23 June 2005

Labour scratches surface on race review

National Party Maori Affairs spokesman Gerry Brownlee says Labour is only scratching the surface in its review of race-based funding which, among other things, has found major flaws with the funding formula for PHOs.

"Labour has consistently denied race-based funding was an issue. And even as recently as the past few weeks Labour has signalled its intention to extend legal aid to Maori claimants exercising their new rights under the Foreshore and Seabed Act.

"Trevor Mallard has only scratched the surface. He has overseen a largely superficial review which was carried out, in many cases, by the officials who wrote the race-based policies in the first place.

"When asked in Parliament recently how much money had been spent on Treaty related education courses Mr Mallard said he had not bothered to look.

"When asked why Labour was still appointing public servants who were required to subscribe to a particular view of the Treaty, Mr Mallard ducked for cover, claiming he had no responsibility for that.

"And Labour even voted against a bill to remove the vague principles of the Treaty from legislation - even though in February last year Mr Mallard said 'inconsistent and incoherent references' to the Treaty will be tidied up

"Labour has shown no determination to make real change and that's underlined in many areas of the race-based review where Mr Mallard has indicated there will be further 'evaluation'.

"Only National can be trusted to deliver policies based on need rather than race," says Mr Brownlee.

Ends

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