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Seminar looks at future of accident compensation

Seminar looks at future of accident compensation

Sir Owen Woodhouse, whose landmark report led to the establishment of the Accident Compensation Corporation, will speak at a seminar, on the future of New Zealand’s accident compensation scheme, in Wellington on Monday September 1.

Other speakers at the day-long seminar are:
• Maryan Street, ACC Minister
• Paul Hutchison, National’s disability issues spokesperson.
• Alan Clayton, Australian research consultant who peer reviewed the Pricewaterhouse Coopers review of ACC.
• Hazel Armstrong, lawyer specialising in accident compensation and employment law.

The seminar will also include a panel of MPs
• Sue Bradford, Green Party
• Peter Brown, NZ First
• Heather Roy, ACT
• Judy Turner, United Future

David Russell, the former chief executive of the NZ Consumers’ Institute, will chair the seminar.
Kevin O’Leary, from the NZ Association of Occupational Therapists, is the seminar convenor.

The seminar has been organised by a wide range of organisations that include: the NZ Society of Physiotherapists; Public Services Association; NZ Nurses Organisation; Osteopathic Society of NZ; Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union; NZ Association of Occupational Therapists; NZ Council of Trade Unions; Podiatry NZ; Rail and Maritime Transport Union; the National Assembly of People with Disabilities and the NZ College of Clinical Psychologists.

“We have organised this seminar because how we provide accident compensation is an issue that affects every single New Zealander,” says ACC Futures seminar convenor, Kevin O’Leary.

“Accident compensation touches every aspect of our lives as we can be injured at work, playing sport, gardening or doing any activity from DIY to scuba diving.”

“This is why we’ve invited hundreds of health, sports, business, education and other organisations to the seminar. These include the NZ Insurance Council, NZ Medical Association, NZ School Trustees Association and the NZ Rugby Union.”

“With an election coming up we believe it’s timely for all of us to be talking about how we deliver accident compensation now and in the future. There is much to discuss,” says Kevin O’Leary

In April, Pricewaterhouse Coopers released its review of how well ACC provides accident compensation. The company found that the corporation “performs as well or better than most other schemes we can observe around the world.” It formed the view that we should keep ACC as the sole provider of workplace accident compensation.

In July, National announced that the party would investigate opening workplace accident compensation to competition. John Key says if National is elected this will almost certainly happen.

“This seminar brings together a wide range of people and organisations to look at these diverse views of how we provide accident compensation,” says Kevin O’Leary.


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