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To: House of Representatives

Remove Official Language barriers towards political participation in NZ by 2020

Remove Official Language barriers towards political participation in NZ by 2020

We request the House of Representatives to guarantee the right of Deaf/Hard of hearing voters/candidates to barrier-free Elections by 2020.

Therefore we request the House of Representatives to update the Electoral Act 1993 and any relevant legislation to ensure the official languages of New Zealand have the legal means to be fully inclusive of New Zealand's Elections.

Make available NZSL Interpreters for Electioneering (take participation in a campaign to be elected to public office - meet the candidates, multimedia election debates, campaign activities).

Make available funding for captioning that voters and candidates on all multimedia platforms can use (Television and Internet).

Make available access to new technology (video interpreter services) during voting periods at polling booths.

Make available funding for NZSL Interpreters and communication supports (hearing loops, captioned content, note-takers) for Deaf/Hard of Hearing members to fully participate in their own choice of party or group annually.

Why is this important?

NZ's official languages are not being utilised enough during Elections and within political party and campaign groups.

Not for profit organisations and volunteer groups are having to beg for volunteers or use their own limited funding to cover the cost of NZSL/Te Reo Interpreters at Meet the Candidates events around the country.

This is unreasonable to expect NZSL Interpreters to give up their time to volunteer when they need to pay rent, rates, mortgages etc too.

This puts Deaf and Hard of Hearing voters/candidates in a position of having limited means of communication to ask questions or give presentations at these events.

TVNZ refusing to make available NZSL Interpreters on our state broadcasters Television Election Debates is a prime example of electoral prejudice against voters who depend on an official language to fully participate in a democratic progress.

Deaf/Hard of Hearing members need NZSL interpreter and communication support funding that allows them to fully participate within their chosen political party/campaign group throughout the year.

We request the Speaker of the House to set aside funding to allow full political party/group participation in an accessible democracy society.

Lets make Elections barrier-free for our official languages by 2020.

How it will be delivered

Petition will be delivered to Parliament on April 5th through Chloe Swarbrick and supporting MPs.

Reasons for signing

  • Support to Deaf/HoH involve the political and remove barrier.
  • Because we need an inclusive democracy!
  • The declaration of 'official language' status is a worse-than-meaningless mockery of our laws without ensuring genuine, real world status


2018-02-23 07:48:17 +1300

We're excited that Chloe Swarbrick private member bill 'Election Access Fund' has been drawn from the Biscuit Tin yesterday.

This petition continues as it is, to cover some areas that may not be covered in the current bill.

2018-02-13 20:24:59 +1300

100 signatures reached

2018-02-13 17:56:54 +1300

50 signatures reached

2018-02-13 16:22:57 +1300

25 signatures reached

2018-02-13 14:32:51 +1300

10 signatures reached