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List offers experience, diversity, credibility

The Progressive Party's Election 2005 List offers political experience, credibility and diversity, party president Grant Gillon said today.

"Progressive's list includes a combined 42 years Parliamentary experience, and a combined 23 years of governmental experience, within its top five positions.

Emphasizing the party's commitment to lowering financial barriers to education and improving education standards, its Education Spokesperson, Dr Megan Woods, is number four on the list.

"Our top ten candidates' work and community experience is extensive with strong representation of those in small business as well as representation from people with professional experience in the education and health sectors," he said.

"Progressive's electoral objectives this election are to see Jim Anderton increase his majority in the Wigram electorate while the 50 Progressive candidates around the country are campaigning to raise Party Votes for Progressive to increase our party's influence within the next Helen Clark-led coalition government," Grant Gillon said.

"The reason we want to increase our influence within the coalition is to deliver on our key policies such as doing more to get low income families into their first homes, raise the alcohol purchasing age to twenty and cut the company tax rate to match Australia's to help propel job-creation," Grant Gillon said.

Other key Progressive policies include raising the floor of National Superannuation, slashing tertiary graduates' debt in return for them working in New Zealand and introducing free prescriptions and genuinely free GP visits for the young and the elderly," Grant Gillon said.

"Progressive has a very strong record of getting good things done in politics. We delivered Kiwibank, 4 Weeks' Paid Annual Leave for workers, job creation through industry and regional economic development, the campaign against alcohol and other drug abuse and much more.

"In the next Parliament, we will deliver policies to slash graduates' debt burden, turn the tide against youth binge drinking, get more low income families into their first homes and deliver more job opportunities aided by a lower headline company tax rate to match Australia's".

ENDS

Progressive Party's 2005 General Election List: www.progressiveparty.org.nz/list or

http://www.progressive.org.nz/modules.php?name=Sections&op=viewarticle&artid=169

Experience:

Top Five includes 42 years Parliamentary experience in Jim Anderton, Matt Robson, Grant Gillon and John Wright; and 23 years combined experience in government.

Credibility:

Top ten candidates' work and community experience includes small business people and health and education sector professionals. It includes outstanding new settlers that have made significant contributions to our society including Auckland barrister, Sione Fonua, businessman Meng Ly, a survivor of Pol Pot's killing fields and Dr Fatima Ashrafi, a senior medical specialist originally from Bangladesh. Barry Wilson, a Cambridge-trained economist and lawyer, is the Inspector of Mental Health for Auckland, a talkback host for 1ZB as well as the president of the Auckland Council for Civil Liberties.

Diversity:

The top 25 candidates' represents the diverse, tolerant society that New Zealand is in the 21st century. Candidates ranked from 26 are listed in alphabetical order.

Information on candidates can be found at:

http://www.progressive.org.nz/candidates

1. Jim Anderton Leader - Progressive MP for Wigram
2. Matt Robson Deputy Leader - Tamaki
3. Grant Gillon Housing Spokesperson - Northcote
4. Dr Megan Woods Education Spokesperson - Christchurch Central
5. John Wright Small Business/Tax Spokesperson - Waimakariri
6. Sione Fonua - Maungakiekie
7. Vivienne Shepherd - Whangarei
8. Meng Ly - Pakuranga
9. Dr Fatima Ashrafi - Epsom
10. Barry Wilson (List Only)
11. Fale Leleisiuao - Mana
12. Dr Russell Franklin - Otaki
13. Paula Gillon - North Shore
14. Phil Clearwater - Banks Peninsula
15. Trevor Barnard - Manukau East
16. Raghbir Singh - Manurewa
17. Brenda Hill - Clevedon
18. Fiona Beazley - East Coast Bays
19. Russell Caldwell - Te Tai Tonga
20. David Reeks - Taupo
21. John Maurice - Kaikoura
22. Mohammad Kazemi-Yazdi - New Lynn
23. Heka Taefu - Invercargill
24. Veronique (Ronnie) Stewart-Ward - Bay of Plenty
25. Zemin (Ted) Zhang - Ilam.

ENDS

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