Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Meeting and Forum at Parliament - Tuesday 24 Aug.

Human Rights Commission
Media Advisory - 18 August 2004

Meeting and Forum at Parliament - Tuesday 24 August

Following the desecration of the Bolton St and Makara Jewish cemeteries, writers James and Helen McNeish have called for people to focus on "A Way Forward for Racial Harmony", embracing New Zealanders of all cultures and backgrounds. Race Relations Commissioner Joris de Bres has given his support to this citizens' initiative, which will take the form of a meeting in the forecourt at Parliament at 12.30pm on Tuesday 24 August, and a Forum to discuss constructive proposals to achieve greater racial harmony and safety for all communities in New Zealand. This is to build on the unanimous resolution of Parliament last week, and the statement of support for the resolution from Maori, Pakeha, Pacific, Asian, Middle Eastern and other community leaders tabled in the House.

The Speaker of the House, Rt Hon Jonathan Hunt, has given his approval for the meeting and will issue the invitations to the Forum. Attendance at the Forum is by invitation only.

Details are as follows:

Public meeting: Forecourt of Parliament, 12.30 pm. Speakers will include Sir Paul Reeves, Hon Chris Carter, Minister of Ethnic Affairs, Sukhi Turner, Mayor of Dunedin, Dr Ngatata Love, Wellington Tenths Trust, Roger Moses, Principal, Wellington College, three youth representatives and James McNeish.

Forum: Banquet Hall, Executive Wing, Parliament Buildings, 1.30- 3.00 pm. The forum will be hosted by the Speaker of the House, Rt Hon Jonathan Hunt, and co-chaired by Bob Harvey, Mayor of Waitakere and Joris de Bres, Race Relations Commissioner. Invitees are being asked to bring along and contribute their own suggestions for positive actions and programmes.

Both events will be open to the media.

Background information:
A wake up call from writers James and Helen McNeish

Please join us, Sir Paul Reeves, Dr Ngatata Love, Mayor Sukhi Turner, Headmaster Roger J Moses, other concerned New Zealanders and the people of Wellington at large on the forecourt of parliament for a meeting on racial harmony in the wake of the incidents at Bolton street and Makara cemeteries

We invite you to join us on the forecourt of Parliament at 12.30 pm on Tuesday 24 August. You may also wish to attend a forum which will be held immediately afterwards inside Parliament, from 1.30-3.00 pm. The Forum, "A Way Forward", will be an open discussion co-chaired by Race Relations Commissioner Joris de Bres and Waitakere Mayor Bob Harvey. We want to hear your ideas to help us develop specific proposals and long-term action.

We have received indicative approval from the Speaker of Parliament, Rt.Hon. Jonathan Hunt. Because space inside Parliament is limited, and there are security considerations, we will need to confirm acceptance of your participation in the Forum with his Office. Please respond by noon on Thursday 19 August to fionar@hrc.co.nz if you wish to attend.

Background

As we are sure you are aware, we as New Zealanders face the growing challenge of developing a society which is more welcoming of diversity, made more poignant by recent events.

Tuesday 10 August's unanimous, cross party resolution in Parliament, condemning the desecration of Wellington Jewish cemeteries as an outrage and a form of terrorism, is widely welcomed. But it is only a beginning. We want to give expression to Parliament's historic resolution. We want to focus on constructive ideas and initiatives which look to the future.

We want to support the mission of the Race Relations Commissioner to promote racial harmony, which leads us to rise above politics and division.

Other people who have already identified with our initiative include Phil Amos, Chris Carter, Chris Laidlaw, David Lange, Bob Harvey, Ngatata Love, Melino Maka, Paul Morris, Roger J Moses, Rev John Murray, Ken Muramatsu, David Moskovitz, Terence O'Brien, Michael Powles, John Prebble, Ian Prior, Lani Tupu, Ross Wilson and Lydia Wevers.

The search for ideas has two aims - to stimulate commitment towards greater tolerance, and to help inform and strengthen existing initiatives so that all ethnic and religious groups may feel they can live in this land without being threatened by their "difference".

People are shocked, shaken up. Already we are heartened by the support coming in from New Zealanders of all cultures and backgrounds, as evinced by the statement from community leaders tabled in Parliament on Tuesday.

Ours is an independent citizen initiative. Former Governor-General Sir Paul Reeves will be the keynote speaker in the forecourt.

We believe that the implication of what has happened at Bolton St and Makara goes far beyond a single targeted community: that it is both a signal and a test for all New Zealanders. We have a vision of racial harmony in a healthy society which we hope all New Zealanders share.

We would welcome ideas in short statements we might quote in appropriate settings such as at the meetings at Parliament. You can send your suggestions to diversity@thinktank.org.nz .

Support is being facilitated by Anthony Haas at the Centre for Citizenship Education, via email ahaas@decisionmaker.co.nz

If you would like an invitation to attend the Forum please email Race Relations Commissioner Joris de Bres, at the Human Rights Commission, at fionar@hrc.co.nz.

Warm regards

James and Helen McNeish


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>

ALSO:

More Justice & Corrections

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news