• Cut ties with iFLYTEK - support the Uyghurs
    The situation for the Uyghur people in China is horrific and urgent. Mass ‘re-education camps’ are now holding at least one million Uyghur people in China, which many are now acknowledging as concentration camps. Thousands of people have vanished. Children are being removed from their parents and being placed in re-education schools. Women are the subject of forced sterilisation. Muslim Uyghur people are unable to practice their religion, associate with each other or travel freely. More and more reports of torture and sexual abuse are emerging from the camps. Uyghurs who have fled their homeland are still not free to speak up on what is happening, as China is enforcing a policy of punishing the families of those who do. Words such as ‘concentration camps’ and ‘ethnic cleansing’ should not be used lightly, but it is now widely acknowledged that this is the reality of the strategy being employed by the Chinese Government on the Uyghur people. Even here in New Zealand, we are aware of harassment and intimidation of the small Uyghur community by the Chinese government. Recently released documents obtained from the Chinese Government show what a pivotal role technologies involving data and artificial intelligence are playing in this mass scale repression and ethnic and religious forced assimilation. That iFlytek is involved in supplying technology to the police of the Xinjiang region, where the Uyghur people live, is not speculation but rather well evidenced and documented. Mass surveillance technology has assisted the Government to identify tens of thousands of people recommended for interrogation or detention in just one week. Massey signed a funding agreement with iFlytek in 2017, a chinese artificial intelligence company worth around $15 billion. The arrangement involves the company funding the salary of an academic who splits their time working at Massey and at iFlytek. The New Zealand Government has joined more than 20 countries in an official letter condemning the Chinese Government's treatment of the Uyghur people. Human Rights Watch has published an extensive reports exposing the complicity of iFlytek in the violence against the Uyghurs. The US has blacklisted the company. MBIE alerted Massey to the blacklisting “so it could consider any implications for itself”, but Massey has not responded. Publicly funded institutions like Massey University have no place working in close collaboration, and sharing new technologies and research, with a company involved in these atrocities. Massey ending this funding agreement would send a signal that the world is watching what is happening to the Uyghur people and will not stand by with complicity. More information: Masseys ties with iFlytek: https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2019/11/26/913921/massey-working-with-chinese-firm-blacklisted-over-human-rights# A quick guide on the situation: https://aucklandpeaceaction.wordpress.com/2019/11/28/hard-to-imagine-mass-repression-of-uyghur-people-by-chinese-government/ More info on the camps and mass surveillance: https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/11/secret-papers-reveal-workings-chinas-xinjiang-detention-camps-191125004212642.html Human Rights Watch report on iFlytek: https://www.hrw.org/news/2017/10/22/china-voice-biometric-collection-threatens-privacy
    327 of 400 Signatures
    Created by Auckland Peace Action
  • Save NZ Review of Books Pukapuka Aotearoa
    A creative culture needs critics and forums for discussion about art. NZ Review of Books reviews books published in New Zealand, it is solely dedicated to NZ books and is the only long form print review channel left in NZ. They have been running for nearly 30 years, and their editors estimate they've reviewed 15,000 NZ books in that time. Without funding this journal cannot survive. Without NZ Review of Books, writers, publishers, readers, librarians, booksellers, academics and students lose a vital part of the conversation about NZ literature. We wish to communicate our dismay at the decision Creative New Zealand have made to stop funding the journal New Zealand Review of Books Pukapuka Aotearoa. We ask that Creative New Zealand reconsider this decision. We believe that by deciding not to fund the journal Creative New Zealand is doing harm to the literary arts ecosystem in Aotearoa by removing one of the load-bearing pillars of critical discussion of books and ideas across multiple disciplines. As writers, readers, librarians, booksellers, publishers, academics, students and promoters of New Zealand writing, we rely on journals such as this to inform how we buy, lend, read and talk about our own literature. Our understanding is that Creative New Zealand’s work is to encourage, promote and support the arts in New Zealand for the benefit of all New Zealanders. We believe the decision to stop funding NZ Review of Books undermines this work. It also sends a message that open discussion, debate and critical exploration of the literary arts and the world of ideas are not valued. We sign this statement as a protest against the withdrawn funding and to ask that Creative New Zealand will reinstate it so that NZ Review of Books can continue to publish.
    1,032 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Kirsten McDougall
  • Open Letter: Welfare Relationship Policies Must Change
    For the reasons above, the following organisations have signed the open letter: ✏ Auckland Action Against Poverty ✏ Child Poverty Action Group ✏ ActionStation ✏ The Council of Trade Unions New Zealand ✏ First Union ✏ Unions Auckland ✏ Unite Union ✏ Auckland's Women's Centre ✏ The Aunties ✏ Disabled Persons Assembly ✏ CCS Disability Action ✏ Te Kupenga Whakaoti Mahi Patunga: National Network of Family Violence Services ✏ Mental Health Foundation ✏ FinCap ✏ HELP Sexual Abuse Wellington ✏ Barnardos ✏ Pax Christi
    1,555 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Team ActionStation Picture
  • Aviation Eco-Tax to offset climate impact of flying
    Although aviation only accounts for about four percent of all warming activity, it is growing at a rate of five percent each year. This means it is on track to double in 15 years as people in poorer countries become accustomed to the kind of lifestyles westerners have been enjoying for decades. People living in New Zealand are among the worst offenders for greenhouse gas emissions from aviation. There are no currently-viable technologies that can enable people to fly without adversely affecting the climate. In New Zealand the cost of taking a bus or train is very high relative to flying. Flying is so cheap there is no incentive to travel by means which emit less CO2. In Sweden the amount added is very moderate, ranging from $10 to around $60. If you can afford to buy a ticket, you can also afford to pay the tax. Despite the fact that the amount is so small, the effect in Sweden has been very positive, with a decline in flight passengers and rapid growth in train ridership. There has been a significant shift in attitudes and these are outcomes we need in New Zealand as well. Each of you holds a portfolio which will either be impacted by climate de-stabilisation, or is directly linked to taxing aviation. Please bring in an Aviation Tax now.
    127 of 200 Signatures
    Created by Anguli Julie
  • Fix Wairau Estuary & Milford Beach
    North Shore beaches are the pride of Auckland and are of world renown. Wairau Estuary and Milford Beach are a regional resource. Large numbers of visitors from South and West Auckland enjoy them throughout summer. Yet Wairau Estuary is one of the most heavily contaminated waterways in Auckland. The contamination includes silt (that chokes seafloor life), human faecal contamination, heavy metals and hydrocarbons. Wairau Outlet has a permanent no swim warning. The only one north of the Harbour Bridge. There is human sewage in the Wairau Estuary. This contaminates Milford Beach. Heavy metals and hydrocarbons in the Estuary are carried with silt onto Milford and Castor Bay Beaches. High levels of Zinc, Lead, Copper, Cadmium, Chromium and Arsenic are present. Polyaromatic hydrocarbons cause cancer and are found in the sediment of Milford Beach in moderately elevated (amber zone) quantities. There is a total ban on gathering shellfish off the Wairau Outlet, because they contain human faecal matter. Council puts a red no swim advisory on any beach when 2 in every 100 swimmers are likely to get sick. Swimming illness is usually mild; it takes the form of a “cold”, ear infection or sinus infection. Or a “tummy bug”, with diarrhoea or vomiting. Most people view swimming as healthy and mistakenly blame other factors for their illness. Children are at highest risk from swimming, because they play in the shallows where the faecal bugs concentrate. The Wairau Estuary is special to Milford & Castor Bay. There is nothing similar on other North Shore beaches. It should be a jewel in the crown; a place that people & wildlife seek out rather than avoid because it is stinky & toxic. In addition to its own unique features, it can be a connection between Lake Pupuke, Sylvan Park, Milford & Castor Bay Beach. Sign our petition for a cleaner, safer Milford Beach and Wairau Estuary.
    1,235 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Guy Armstrong
  • Petition for the Support to Decriminalize Homosexuality in the Cook Islands
    Ko Sonya Apa Temata toku ingoa, I am known as 'Apa' here in our Ipukarea after my papa Tapeka Apa. I am Cook Islands Māori Tahiti born in Aotearoa NZ. Ko Vakas Takitumu, Te Au o Tonga & Puaikura. I am Atiu (Tangapatoro/Tekapo/Ngaata anau), Mauke (Noema/Temata anau) Mangaia (Cummings anau) Rarotonga (Tamaiva/Tepuretu anau), Arorangi (Apera/Temata anau) Tahiti the Parau fanau (Rurutu/Raiatea) ko Tupuna Paora Parau iwi Ngati Kahungungu, Aotearoa. I am Aka TutuTane/Takataapui we don’t fit into any specific constructed mould’s of gender & sexuality, traditionally we are known as Takatāpui (NZ Maori), Mahu (Hawaii & Tahiti), Vakasalewalewa (Fiji), Palopa (Papua New Guinea), Fa’afafine/Fa'atama (Samoa), Aka’vaine/ Aka'Tutu Tane (Cook Islands), Fakaleiti (Tonga), Fakafi’fine (Niue) & other Indigenous Rainbow peoples Sister Girls & Sister Boys (Australian Aboriginal) Two Spirit (First Nations Peoples). My mother Tuakana Apa Temata was my number one advocate and supporter of LGTBI rights, her acceptance of my sexual orientation and that of my two brothers allowed us to be who we are, and to love whom we wanted to be with regardless of sexuality, gender and sexual orientation. My mother and great grandma Mama Mii Cummings Ngaata instilled in me strong values of respect, humility and acceptance, they also taught me the ‘art of compassion’, to give unto others as they would give unto us. There teachings speaks volumes, and that is reflected in the work I do as a nurse, an activist, a feminist, a humanitarian, an advocate & a leader. It is with great sadness that our mother passed away last year and so her legacy continues in me and the work she was so passionate about and for. As a survivor of domestic & sexual violence, she passed onto me the same passion and determination to provide advocacy, support & assistance to women fleeing from violence & trauma and those less fortunate especially from our LGTBI community. My own personal involvement within our Rainbow Pasifika/LGTBI community extends from my own in a professional and volunteer capacity. As one of the Auckland Pride Board members from 2016 to 2018, I am one of our diverse community leaders who lead & coordinated our Pasefika Pride float, a non-profit collective of diverse community leaders & volunteers based in Tamaki Makaurau, Auckland. For the first time ever in 2014 our Pasefika Rainbow community had ‘visibility’ & showcased our diverse arts, heritage & culture along Ponsonby Rd, Auckland. Then in 2015, Pasefika Pride established to bring forth a generation of young and older Rainbow Pasefika LGTBI represent again in 2016 with our theme: ‘It Takes a Village to Raise a Child’. Pasefika Prides message was to address & highlight the counteracting issues of suicide, violence & abuse, poverty, stigma & discrimination that is prevalent amongst our diverse Pacific & Maori communities. In 2017 we merged with Tangata Whenua, Ue Nuku Whanau & created the biggest ever float with Maori & Pasefika combined renaming ourselves as Oceania Pride Aotearoa: Ngā Aho Tapu o Te Moana-nui-ō-Kiwa, Sacred Connections of Oceania. In 2018 Oceania Pride Aotearoa amplified its voice to reduce stigma & discrimination across Oceania and to support the amendment, removal & action on the Decriminalization to the Homosexual Legislation that currently exists in the Cook Islands & other Pacific nations. This year 2019 we marched with our Rainbow LGTBI community & Auckland Pride once more in support of our Takataapui & Rainbow Pasefika community to amplify our voices and to decolonize the very same hegemonic systems & structures that continue to perpetuate hate, violence and discrimination against those most vulnerable. It is important to acknowledge the historical influences & devastating impact of Colonisation and early settlements by missionaries and its impact on indigenous knowledge & understandings of gender, sex and sexuality, and how this has shaped broad social attitudes and norms in Aotearoa NZ (Reid et al, 2017) and across Te Moana Nui o Kiva. The Cook Islands is one of several Pacific nations, which, still criminalize same-sex relations between men and offer no human rights protections to those who are widely ostracized & often discriminated by their families & communities. For many across Oceania, these nations cling to anti-gay laws enacted under colonial rule and the influence of conservative Christian missionaries. Those laws criminalized consensual sexual relations between males but not between women until just recently here in the Cook Islands. The launch of the United Nations Pacific free and equal campaign in 2014 was to end Transphobia and Homophobia this also reignited calls in the Cook Islands & other Pacific nations to change the law. Aotearoa NZ has a long-standing track record & history of being the first country to Give Women the Vote. The first country to have the largest number of openly gay or lesbian politicians to have served in New Zealand's Parliament, Tim Barnett, Chris Carter, Louisa Wall, Maryan Street, Georgina Beyer became the first transgender mayor in the world and the world's first transgender MP. Our LGTBI Rainbow communities continue to experience discrimination, stigma, homophobia, violence and suicide. We have the highest suicide rates amongst Māori & Pacific whereby our Rainbow LGTBI community statistics are the highest amongst this population. In New Zealand, it is unlawful to discriminate against anyone because of their sexual orientation or sex/gender identity within areas of life as stated by the Human Rights Act 1993. As the saying goes, it takes a village to raise a child, a collective approach to remind us all the reality of the issues that we continue to fight for and against. Resilience comes in many forms built on courage, mana & integrity.. my sexuality does not define who I am..who I am and where I come from defines 'me'..Kia Orana e Kia Manuia #SpeakUpAndAgainstStigmaDiscriminationAndHomophobia
    5,171 of 6,000 Signatures
    Created by Sonya Temata
  • NZ Police keep the peace - say no to 'Armed Response Teams'
    Last week, Police Commissioner Mike Bush announced a trial of Armed Response Teams (ARTs) to support Police's tactical capabilities on the front line. Patrols will be trialed in Counties Manukau, Waikato, and Canterbury over the next six months. These squads will be groups of police officers armed with guns roaming communities in SUVs. They way this is described in the words of the Police is “...routinely armed, equipped, mobile and ready...” The Police have referred to the aftermath of the horrific March 15 Mosque Terror Attacks saying they must be prepared to operate in a different context. Yet after March 15 across Aotearoa we saw people in community vigils singing waiata together for comfort, flowers being laid outside Mosques, and aroha being shown in so many ways including changing some laws. These actions showed us countering terror by strengthening our social connection. In these moments we showed our humanity and that in our communities we all wish to thrive. Looking forward, many of us see our communities are at their best as places of home, of connection, and of coming together. They’re where we develop our sense of belonging. Putting more police with guns on the streets won’t protect communities or help us feel safe. Institutional racism within the police means the squads will be more likely to target Māori and Pasifika. Racism impacting use of force by police is already evident. Police are nearly eight times more likely to use violence against Māori than Pākehā, and three times more likely to use violence against Pasifika people than Pākehā. 66% of the people police have fired guns at in the last 10 years were Māori or Pasifika. There is also evidence of police abusing and misusing access to and use of guns. From official Police information (via OIA), over a seven month period police officers used guns 148 times. These uses excluded Armed Offenders Squad callouts. In more than 1 in 4 of those times, police officers used guns at people who were recorded as being cooperative or otherwise below the level or resistance requiring higher use of force determined by the Tactical Operations Framework. A study from Princeton University showed that similar ‘Armed Response Teams’ tended to be used most often in non-emergencies such as for search warrants and did nothing to improve community or officer safety. The study also found they were used most often against people of colour. When we picture flourishing communities, we see families with great homes, enough pūtea (money) to put food on the table, and time to spend with each other. We see support readily available for hard times, and people celebrating together in good ones. We don’t see more police presence with more weapons. That’s why we are calling on Prime Minister Rt Hon. Jacinda Ardern and Minister for Police Hon. Stuart Nash to stop the trials of Armed Response Teams (ARTs), and end increased militarisation of police. The highest duty of police officers should be the protection of human life, but initiatives like this do not serve to protect life. More cops with guns means more people shot by police. It's up to us, as responsible citizens, to put a higher value on human life, and to not accept this. 1 https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/former-cop-and-auckland-councillor-critical-new-armed-police-programme-but-deputy-commissioner-says-its-necessary TVNZ Breakfast. 22 October 2019 2 https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/on-the-inside/401394/opinion-more-cops-with-guns-means-more-people-shot-by-police Mark Hanna for RNZ. 20 October 2019 3 https://fyi.org.nz/request/5014/response/16479/attach/5/Tactical%20Options%20Framework.pdf NZ Police Tactical Operations Framework 4 https://www.princeton.edu/news/2018/08/21/militarization-police-fails-enhance-safety-may-harm-police-reputation Princeton University. 21 August 2018 5 https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/te-manu-korihi/401685/armed-response-team-cops-criticism-nothing-good-can-come-out-of-this Te Aniwa Hurihanganui for RNZ. 24 October 2019
    29,481 of 30,000 Signatures
    Created by Melissa Lama
  • Save NZ Dolphins
    Māui dolphins are on the brink of extinction and Hector’s dolphins are heading towards a similar fate if nothing changes. These dolphins are taonga and native to New Zealand, they’re not found anywhere else in the world. The single greatest threat to Māui and Hector’s dolphins is fishing nets. There used to be around 50,000 Hector’s but now, because of destructive fishing methods, not many more than 10,000 remain. For the critically endangered Māui, it’s even worse. In the 1970s there were around 2,000, now there are fewer than 60 left. If we don’t act now we risk losing New Zealand dolphins forever. We need to save them, and we hope you will help us! Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC), has been working in New Zealand behind-the-scenes for years gathering evidence and garnering political and public support. Now it’s time for all of us to raise our voices and be heard. Around 110 to 150 New Zealand dolphins die in set nets every year and a similar number in trawls. Set nets are sometimes referred to as ‘walls of death’. They hang in the water, anchored to the sea bed with weights and are stretched across the surface with floats. They are indiscriminate, catching every creature that swims into them. Trawl nets are dragged through the water by boats and, like the set nets, scoop up whatever and whoever is in their path. Right now Hector’s and Māui dolphins are protected from set nets in just 30% of their habitat and from trawl nets in less than 10%. But, here’s the great news – if we band together we can protect them and we could save the species. Are you with us? The New Zealand government is currently working on what’s called a Threat Management Plan for these dolphins – this plan outlines what the government intends to do to look after the dolphins. However the plan is woefully inadequate; the government proposals will allow at least 50 dolphins to die every year in fishing nets. This is unacceptable! See the plan here: https://www.mpi.govt.nz/dmsdocument/34971. We’re urging Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to remove these dangerous nets from the dolphins’ home. We’re calling for the New Zealand government to transition our country away from destructive fishing methods, and immediately phase out set net and trawl fishing within the dolphins’ habitat, to the 100 metre depth contour, around the whole coast of the country. The government must also consult relevant local iwi about implementing a phase out of trawling and set nets in line with the obligations of Te Tiriti o Waitangi. This is our chance to show the government how much we love these dolphins. They are taonga and deserve to survive and thrive. Sign our petition to send the Prime Minister a message and help us save them! What you can do: - Write to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, using the automatic form on our petition page - Like and share our Facebook/Instagram pages https://www.facebook.com/whalesorgnz/ https://www.instagram.com/wdc_nz/ - Post on social media about NZ dolphins and share it with us using the hashtag #SaveNZDolphins https://vimeo.com/385897570
    10,045 of 15,000 Signatures
    Created by Whale and Dolphin Conservation Picture
  • Solidarity with the people of Chile - NZ to Condemn the actions of the Chilean State
    The Chilean government of Sebastian Piñera have deployed the military on the streets of Chile, they have imposed curfew, shot and killed innocent citizens in acts of repression, and falsified citizen committed crimes in order to justify such acts. We must stand for Chile, in order to stand against worldwide acts of repression and human rights crimes that are being enabled through western systems. https://www.theguardian.com/world/gallery/2019/oct/20/protests-in-chile-against-cost-of-living-in-pictures References and Alternative Media: Please note that the media we are receiving in the western world and the mainstream media in Chile is extremely biased and has been censored. Please be critical about everything you read. https://www.telesurtv.net/news/represion-carabineros-manifestacion-santiago-chile-toque-queda-20191021-0016.html https://resumen.cl/articulos/once-acciones-legales-ha-presentado-indh-por-violencia-policial 11 legal actions taken against the state regarding human rights abuses https://resumen.cl/articulos/veinte-videos-muestran-desmedida-represion-de-militares-y-policia-contra-legitimas-manifestaciones 20 videos that show the police repression against democratic manifestations https://twitter.com/prensaopal?fbclid=IwAR1rf9lENKTJ8xwhTGhK0rzu4zIs8tU4RRbDYcOSmBhANwnEYBKDQCb2G88 https://resumen.cl/articulos/impresionantes-imagenes-aereas-muestran-masividad-legitimas-protestas-populares-ciudad-de-concepcion https://scontent.fpmr1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/73120120_2766637883369215_3859160911549825024_n.jpg?_nc_cat=110&_nc_oc=AQlq82ktaqqoWfOWL_FV90sr9e_K-ttzc-ilgdnZfeaJLXtWXzRXUsnYkOGfi6s_STw&_nc_ht=scontent.fpmr1-1.fna&oh=01430048bc0ce3a7c41d24eccad382c4&oe=5E29B463 13 deaths confirmed - note these have been in 'fires' however the cause of deaths have not been confirmed. https://www.instagram.com/tv/B344eAuBk0A/?igshid=vajyk8cwjq06&fbclid=IwAR0dnHvO97Qa83DwIpJgaLRrfoxV8-D4CPGuZqXnPlhhRG1fi4KTRPpBb8A Information that has not been shared in the wider media https://www.facebook.com/eduardokrtbgihgyt/videos/2790340617701460/ Military advising the people on how to ransack the stores Noticias > América Latina Cifra de muertos por protestas en Chile asciende a 11 La Fiscalía anunció que había un total de 1.554 personas privadas de su libertad, que se encuentran en “audiencia de control de detención”. La Fiscalía anunció que había un total de 1.554 personas privadas de su libertad, que se encuentran en “audiencia de control de detención”. | Foto: Reuters Publicado 21 octubre 2019 (Hace 7 horas 51 minutos) "La cifra de fallecidos oficial que tenemos que lamentar en estos últimos dos días es de 11, tres fallecidos el sábado, y ocho el domingo", informó la intendenta de la Región Metropolitana, Karla Rubilar El número de muertos por las protestas durante el fin de semana en Chile ascendió a 11 personas, informaron este lunes autoridades locales, en el marco del recrudecimiento de la violencia en Santiago, la capital del país suramericano. LEA TAMBIÉN: Chilenos desafían el toque de queda decretado por el Gobierno "La cifra de fallecidos oficial que tenemos que lamentar en estos últimos dos días es de 11, tres fallecidos el sábado, y ocho el domingo", informó la intendenta de la Región Metropolitana, Karla Rubilar en conferencia de prensa. Asimismo, la Fiscalía anunció el domingo que había un total de 1.554 personas privadas de su libertad, que se encuentran en “audiencia de control de detención”. Por su parte, el Instituto Nacional de Derechos Humanos (INDH) presentó acciones legales por “violencia policial”. Se trata de ocho querellas contra carabineros y militares junto a tres recursos de amparo para resguardar la “seguridad de las persona”. Según el director del organismo, Sergio Micco, 283 personas han sido detenidas --151 hombres, 61 mujeres y 71 menores de edad--, 44 han resultado heridas --9 de gravedad--, nueve personas han sido desnudadas en procedimientos policiales. Mientras tanto, el presidente Piñera decidió aplicar toque de queda para toda la Región de Valparaíso a partir de las 20H00 horas locales. El presidente anunció el sábado pasado, la suspensión del alza del precio del metro, después de que el viernes declarara el estado de emergencia en Santiago, una medida que posteriormente se extendió a Concepción y Valparaíso. Pese a dicho anuncio, que fue refrendado el domingo por la Cámara de Diputados, las protestas continuaron durante la jornada, que se saldaron con 76 carabineros heridos. La Alta Comisionada de las Naciones Unidas para los Derechos Humanos, Michelle Bachelet, pidió este lunes iniciar una investigación independiente sobre las muertes ocurridas durante violentas protestas en Chile el fin de semana, y mencionó "perturbadoras" acusaciones de uso excesivo de fuerza militar. En un comunicado desde la sede de su despacho en Ginebra, la expresidenta chilena instó al diálogo inmediato entre las partes para detener "la retórica inflamatoria"
    1,492 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Alana Kane
  • Reduce the nicotine in cigarettes
    Smoking is one of the largest public health issues in Aotearoa. Every year nearly 5,000 Kiwis die from smoking-related illnesses (1). Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death and disease in Aotearoa. It increases a person’s risk of developing numerous cancers, as well as strokes and heart disease (2). On average, a long-term smoker will die 10 to 15 years earlier than non-smokers. But it’s not just direct smoking that is negatively impacting Kiwis. The impact of second-hand smoke continues to contribute to high rates of asthma and respiratory illness in our tamariki (3, 4). Smoking takes a toll on our health system, our whānau and our communities. Tragically, as with many health issues in Aotearoa, smoking disproportionately harms Māori and Pasifika. 31% of Māori adults and 20% of Pasifika adults smoke daily (5). If this government is truly committed to addressing health inequalities in Aotearoa, then reducing the addictiveness of cigarettes is an important place to start. Quitting smoking cigarettes can be hard for many people, even though the overwhelming majority of smokers want to quit (6). The main reason people feel incapable of quitting is that cigarettes contain nicotine, a highly addictive drug. Currently the amount of nicotine in cigarettes is not regulated. The tobacco industry has been able to distribute products with a high nicotine content, leading young people to become quickly addicted when they start and making it incredibly difficult to stop. Requiring companies to remove or significantly decrease the nicotine content from their products would help to end this cycle. A reduction in nicotine would make smoking much less satisfying, resulting in smokers slowing or stopping consumption (7) and minimising the likelihood of young people becoming quickly addicted. Current smokers would be more able to kick the habit, save money and improve their health. Reducing the nicotine in combustible tobacco products compliments the increased availability of e-cigarettes which contain nicotine, giving smokers the opportunity to switch to a less harmful product. Join us and call on our government to reduce the nicotine in cigarettes. This petition is part of Reduce the Nicotine, a broader campaign to reduce the nicotine in cigarettes in Aotearoa - get involved and find out more at: http://reducethenicotine.co.nz/. References: 1) Ministry of Health. (2004). Looking upstream: Causes of death cross-classified by risk and condition, New Zealand 1997. Wellington: Ministry of Health. 2) Laugesen, M. (2000). Tobacco statistics 2000. Wellington: Cancer Society of New Zealand; Vineis, P., Alavanja, M., Buffler, P., Fontham, E., Franceschi, S., Gao, Y.T., et al. (2004). Tobacco and cancer: Recent epidemiological evidence. Journal of National Cancer Institute, 96: 99-106; Ministry of Health. (2005). Tobacco facts 2005. Wellington: Ministry of Health; Quit Victoria. (n.d.). 3) Vineis, P., Alavanja, M., Buffler, P., Fontham, E., Franceschi, S., Gao, Y.T., et al. (2004). Tobacco and cancer: Recent epidemiological evidence. Journal of National Cancer Institute, 96: 99-106.; Jha, P., Ramasundarahettige, C., Landsman, V., Rostron, B., Thun, M., Anderson, R. N., et al. (2013). 21st century hazards of smoking and benefits of cessation in the United States. New England Journal of Medicine, 368, 341-350. 4) Fergusson, D (2015). Christchurch Health and Development Study: Overview of 40 Years of Findings (2015). ASH Scotland (2012). Reducing Children’s Exposure to Second Hand Smoke in the Home. 5) Ministry of Health. New Zealand Health Survey (2006/07 – 2017/18) data tables. 6) Ministry of Health. 2009. New Zealand Tobacco Use Survey 2008: Quitting results. Wellington: Ministry of Health. 7) Donny EC, Walker N, Hatsukami D, Bullen C. Reducing the nicotine content of combusted tobacco products sold in New Zealand. Tobacco Control. 2017(26):e37-e42.
    638 of 800 Signatures
    Created by Reduce the Nicotine Picture
  • Make Migration to NZ more Humane
    Families of New Zealand citizens and residents have been separated and kept apart due to unnecessary visa processing delays by INZ. Children are losing out on the much needed nurture provided by both parents. In the last few years, approximately 70,000 international students have been coming to New Zealand every year to gain world class education, making education our 4th largest export at approximately 4 to 5 billion dollars per year. The students are given work rights so that they can gain much sought after work experience and ultimately become part of New Zealand workforce after graduating. This also puts them on a pathway to residence as promoted by NZ government websites and dodgy education agents. However, the reality is different - the students are forced to re-enrol for the same courses repeatedly due to College closures conducted by NZQA. To add to an already stressful situation, the students are left to extend their visas urgently to avoid becoming unlawful in New Zealand. Many have been deported due to the fault of unregulated education agents. Research studies conducted by Dr Christina Stringer (University of Auckland) and Dr Francis Collins (University of Waikato) clearly conclude that migrant exploitation is rampant when temporary work visas are attached to employers, preventing the employee seeking help or whistleblowing to end their own exploitation. The number of new residents settling in New Zealand has reached the lowest level since the turn of the century. At the same time a record number of temporary work visa holders have been approved, topping more than 240,000 in the last year. What does that mean? Uncertainty and displacement surrounds migrants on temporary visas. Many in this category have been in New Zealand for 5 to 10 years in the hope of a more permanent future here. Every time they are close to realising that hope, the immigration instructions are changed to bring them right back to where they started. The National Government closed the parent visa category in 2016 claiming that it was a temporary measure to bring the migrant numbers under control. The Labour coalition government has announced that the Parent Visa Category will reopen in February 2020. However, the income requirements for the sponsors are outrageously high (2 to 4 times annual median salary of $53,040) and out of reach for most, if not all, working class migrants. Under this visa category, only the rich have the luxury of being near their loved ones. Some high skilled migrants earn just enough to sponsor either Mum or Dad - how does one even contemplate such a choice!!
    2,671 of 3,000 Signatures
    Created by Anu Kaloti
  • Vote STV for Hamilton
    Voter turnout and engagement in local government elections is low. Residents feel that their vote doesn't make a difference. STV is a fairer and more effective voting system for our community to be represented. STV is a system where you rank candidates, instead of under FPP where you tick or don't tick to vote for a candidate. Under STV, you're able to communicate your preferences - if your initial candidates don't get enough votes to get in, as well as if there's more votes for your candidate than they needed to get in, your next choice is counted. Under FPP, because you only have the option of voting for a candidate, or not voting for them at all, this can shape voter behaviour by only voting for candidates who are perceived to be popular or established as not wanting to "waste" their vote on a candidate who may not get over the line. It may also mean that a vote for one candidate on your ballot may be undermined if you vote for another candidate who ends up coming in close in votes to the first candidate - under FPP, you're unable to communicate to the system your preference between the two. - Under STV, winning candidates will have support from a majority of voters. More people will have had a say in the make-up of the elected council. - There are fewer 'wasted votes'. Once a preferred candidate reaches the quota - votes are shifted to their next preferred candidate, and if a candidate does not come close to being elected, votes are shifted to their next preferred candidate as well. - Under STV, our council is more likely to be representative of the voices of our community. We recommend reviewing the additional information provided at https://www.yourcityelections.co.nz/ - put together by Hamilton City Council, and this video about how STV works in action and why is creates more representative councils https://youtu.be/l8XOZJkozfI
    205 of 300 Signatures
    Created by Politics in the Tron Picture