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Parliament gives ACC victims the brush off

Mon, 30 Aug 2004

Parliament gives ACC victims the brush off

Parliament's select committees are playing pass the parcel with a petition calling for an inquiry into ACC's claim management practices, said ACClaim spokesperson Denise Powell today. Ms Powell instigated a petition calling for the inquiry, signed by over 500 people, which was presented to Green MP, Sue Bradford earlier this year.

However, in a surprise move, the petition ended up before the Government Administration committee, which said that its subject matter was outside its responsibility.

The Government Administration committee asked the Transport and Administration committee, which is responsible for ACC matters, to consider the petition but it declined, saying it regarded a recent report by the Auditor-General, Parliament's accountants, as proof that ACC's practices were efficient.

"This is simply not good enough", said Ms Powell. "In the first place, Parliament, not the accountants, are the body responsible for seeing that citizens are treated fairly. Secondly, many people believe the Auditor-General's report was a whitewash, although we note that it, too, made some adverse findings against ACC.

"The Labour Party promised an inquiry into ACC's practices at its 2000 annual conference but its MPs treated that remit with contempt", said Ms Powell. "It is time for Parliament, as the branch of government directly responsible to the people, to see to it that the ACC cesspit is cleaned up before more people have their lives ruined."

"The petitioners and I will watch closely to see what action the committee takes over our petition and we will hold committee members to account publicly during next year's election campaign if they fail to act", said Ms Powell.


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