May 24, 2017

Should politicians have to listen to you?

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OPEN LETTER

DEMOCRACY

Should politicians have to listen to you?

The politicians have a bad track record with citizen’s initiated referendums..

o          In 1999, 82% of NZ’ers said the number of MP’s should be reduced to 99 – the politicians ignored it

o          In 1999, 92% of NZ’ers said that the needs of victims should have greater emphasis, restitution and compensation should be provided, and there should be minimum sentences and hard labour for all serious violent offences – in response, the politicians reduced parole eligibility to 1/3’rd of sentences, instructed judges to impose the least restrictive sentence, and have made unenforceable token gestures towards victims

o          In 2009, 87.4% said that a smack for the purpose of correction should not be a crime under the law – the politicians ignored it

o          And some people believe that we need a referendum on the proposed Auckland ‘Supercity’ because of the major changes it makes to the form of citizen representation.

It’s about time the politicians got the message!

As you know, we are working with businessman Colin Craig on the March for Democracy www.themarch.co.nz

Colin Craig has been quoted as saying that he finds it “ deeply disturbing that such a clear message from the people of this country to government has been ignored. My forefathers fought for a democracy and in a democracy the government does not pass and retain laws that nearly 90% of the people don’t want. It is my turn to help fight for the rights of ordinary New Zealanders.”

Colin isn’t just talking. He’s putting his money where his mouth is. And we need to get in behind him.

As you can see, the purpose of this March goes even further than just the anti-smacking law. When NZ’ers and families speak with such a loud and united voice, as they have on these issues, the politicians must not be allowed to ignore them. It is significant that politicians are willing to accept democracy when it is to their benefit (i.e. getting elected!) but are willing to blatantly ignore it when suits their political agenda.

The March is not a one-off – it is part of a long term strategy to bring representative democracy back to NZ

Ironically, it appears that political parties are keen to accept petitions in their favour – United Future on daylight saving ,  Labour on night-classes – and they also support Referendums – National on MMP , Labour on the Auckland SuperCity , and the Greens on the Monarchy – but when it’s a Citizen’s Initiated Referendum, they suddenly go deaf!

When the law was passed in 1993 allowing referendums to be initiated by the people, senior National MP Sir Doug Graham said “..it will be obvious that, if the public overwhelmingly supported a proposition contained in a referendum, clearly it would have great persuasive weight and any Government that simply ignored it would do so at its peril .”

PLEASE MARK 1.30pm SATURDAY 21 NOVEMBER (meeting at the bottom of Queen St Auckland) IN YOUR DIARY – AND MARCH FOR DEMOCRACY!

More details will be added to the website over the next couple of weeks www.themarch.co.nz

Thanks for your consideration.

Kind regards

Bob McCoskrie
National Director

www.familyfirst.org.nz

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