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Government must not weaken Human Rights in NZ

Government must not weaken Human Rights in NZ

The Council of Trade Unions has spoken out strongly against the proposed amendments to the Human Rights Act at the Justice and Electoral Select Committee today.

“If these amendments are successful, then we will see the Government weaken human rights in Zealand. New Zealand’s proud history of being at the forefront of recognition of basic human rights should be strengthened not weakened. During the review of our human rights record at the UN last month, New Zealand was under the spotlight for a number of areas in which our human rights standards are failing. We should be doing everything we can to strengthen human rights, how can the Government even consider weakening them?” CTU President, Helen Kelly said.

“One of the worst parts of the Bill is the proposal to remove a number of very significant roles – the Equal Employment Opportunities Commissioner, the Race Relations and the newly established Disability Commissioner. These Commissioners, currently have a hugely valuable role to provide leadership in their areas of expertise. Work which is really needed to improve equality and combat discrimination. ”

“The CTU believes that the Human Rights Commission needs to have greater resourcing, not less, so that the human rights of all New Zealanders can be advanced.” Kelly said.

ENDS

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