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What about ACC Mr Key?

14 April, 2008 Media Statement

What about ACC Mr Key?

John Key needs to come clean on whether National’s new position on state asset sales includes an about-turn on its plans to privatise the world-leading ACC scheme, says ACC Minister Maryan Street.

“A major independent report of the ACC scheme released recently confirmed what the Labour-led government has been saying for some time: that it is an invaluable national asset and the hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders using it each year would get poorer services if it were privatised.

“Reducing the quality of health care delivered to New Zealanders by dismantling the $9.5 billion publicly-owned ACC scheme is asset-stripping at its worst.

“It is even more ludicrous when all the evidence points to the fact that a fragmented, privatised system would not only provide lower quality health care - and may result in no care for a number of people - but it would also cost employers more,” said Maryan Street.

“Just a few weeks ago National’s ACC spokesperson Pansy Wong refused to rule out selling or even dismantling ACC. Now I see National’s ACC policy has been removed from the party’s website.

“Does this mean that National’s new one-term, or should I say short-term, commitment on asset sales does include ACC or not? Or is this another one of those “um” issues Mr Key?

“And what about your long-term plans for ACC? Would you spend a first term preparing a case for privatisating the scheme in your second term if you won the election?

“New Zealanders lodge 1.6 million ACC claims a year covering everything from sports injuries, falling down the stairs or off a ladder, to horrific car accidents. They have made a major investment in their future health and need to know if this is going to be pillaged.

“They need to know whether they are going to have to take out private accident insurance under National and it’s about time John Key told them,” said Maryan Street.

ENDS

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