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Labour's PC double standard in agency review

Hon Georgina te Heuheu MP
National Party Women's Affairs Spokesperson
12 August 2003

Labour's PC double standard in agency review

The Labour Government's reinforcing sexist stereotypes with its decision to 'retain' and 'strengthen' the Ministry of Women's Affairs, according to National Party Women's Affairs spokesperson Georgina te Heuheu.

"It's difficult to recall one recent issue that the Ministry has been successful in pushing publicly.

"Some have argued that the Equal Pay Act of 1972 was the only useful act the Ministry of Women's Affairs has ever put its name to," says Mrs te Heuheu.

"This is an agency that already employs more than 24 staff.

"Why is it being treated any differently to the Youth Affairs Ministry, which is now being folded into the Ministry of Social Development?

"This sexist stereotype reinforces the archaic notion that women need some kind of protection from modern society," Mrs te Heuheu says.

"We know from the proportional representation in Parliament that this is no longer the case.

"Consider this - imagine if New Zealanders started demanding the creation of a new Ministry for Men's Affairs?

"That would generate howls of outrage from this PC Labour Government that seems unwilling to let go of the past," says Mrs te Heuheu.

"New Zealand was the first country in the world to give women the vote and that was before the Ministry of Women's Affairs existed.

"The time may now be right to review the future of this Governmental relic from another era," says Mrs te Heuheu.

Ends

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