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Candidate Privacy Rule Ridiculous

Glenfield Ratepayers & Residents Association [Inc]

16 July 2002

Candidate Privacy Rule Ridiculous

I am astounded that I cannot get contact details of candidates who are seeking my vote.

As chairman of Glenfield Ratepayers & Residents Association I have arranged for a meeting to enable the public to meet candidates and ask questions. Glenfield covers two electorates, Northcote and East Coast Bays.

Regrettably I cannot contact all the candidates because the local Returning Officers, under instruction from 'Head Office' , refuse to give me contact details such as phone numbers, addresses or email contacts.

An earlier NZ Herald report stated that details could not be given over the phone - but I understand those details are not given even with a personal visit. This refusal is apparently based on an interpretation of the privacy laws.

This is utter nonsense. And I am sure the candidates would agree with me.

Word of our public meeting is now spreading and two candidates have already rung me asking to attend - and both have given me their phone numbers and email addresses without any problem at all.

As a community organisation seeking to serve the public on a major democratic issue - an election -we are being frustrated by a ridiculous interpretation of privacy laws.

People standing for public office are generally anxious that people know how to contact them.

What right does the Electoral Commission have to put nonsensical barriers in the way of such contact?

ENDS

CONTACT - David Thornton - 443 5302

from DAVID THORNTON
77 Hillcrest Avenue
Northcote
NORTH SHORE CITY
New Zealand
Phone ++64 9 443 5302
Fax ++64 9 443 6771
Mob ++64 25 831 825
email david@kandu.co.nz


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