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Every Child Counts – a Campaign for all NZers

19 April 2005

Every Child Counts – a Campaign for all New Zealanders

A campaign calling on all political parties to consider the role of children in the economic and social development of New Zealand is a highly significant election-year initiative, according to Plunket.

The organisation is among a group of leading non-governmental organisations launching Every Child Counts, a joint call to politicians to put children at the centre of their policy planning for the 2005 election.

“Traditionally, issues such as welfare and law and order dominate the election year agenda. Every Child Counts reminds us that we can never successfully tackle these issues without first prioritising children,” said Kaye Crowther, New Zealand President of Plunket.

“There is a plenty of evidence showing that a child’s early years and experiences will influence whether they grow up as a responsible citizen. If we are serious about tackling crime rates and creating a safer society, we need to look at how we are supporting our families and nurturing our children.

“The first priority of Every Child Counts is to urge all political parties to put children at the centre of policy development and implementation. Simple measures can be taken to assess the impact of policies on children, and to make sure they are right for them,”she said.

Kaye Crowther believes that past election campaigns have failed to fully recognise the vital part children play in the future of New Zealand.

“Every Child Counts is a timely reminder to all New Zealanders that we simply cannot afford the social and economic risks of ignoring children’s issues.

“Plunket welcomes the opportunity to join with others on the Every Child Counts. The campaign is an exciting project, involving an unprecedented coalition of NGOs determined to see children placed firmly on the political agenda,” she said.

ENDS

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