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Volunteers put off by red tape

Jo Goodhew
MP for Aoraki

7 December 2005

Volunteers put off by red tape

National MP Jo Goodhew says the goodwill of many voluntary workers is being tested by the red tape Labour has imposed on them.

She is commenting on Monday’s launch of Keeping it Legal: E Ai Ki Te Ture, an online resource aimed at helping community and voluntary groups understand their legal obligations.

Mrs Goodhew, who has particular interest in the community and voluntary sectors, says it’s ironic that volunteers are now so tied up in red tape that the Government has had to put together a resource to help them manage their legal liabilities.

“It’s great that Labour has finally recognised the problems its red tape has created for the voluntary sector, but the fact that it takes four brochures and 17 fact sheets to help volunteers and community groups grapple with their responsibilities speaks volumes.

“I was horrified by the admission of Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector, Winnie Laban, that because legislation is so frequently changing, the resource will only be available online. Threats of further change will only create further uncertainty in the minds of volunteers.

“This is an admission by the Government that life for the community and voluntary sectors is far too complicated. It is my belief that the best way forward is to unravel the maze by looking at the legislative requirements on these groups. Less government is better government.”

Mrs Goodhew says the voluntary sector has real difficulty recruiting dedicated helpers, and Labour looks set to make that worse, rather than better.

ENDS

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