Greens introduce Bill to make local wards process fair

The Green Party has today entered a Member’s Bill into the ballot that would make local government representation more equitable by ensuring that the establishment of both Māori and general wards on district and regional councils follows the same legal process.

The Green Party has today entered a Member’s Bill into the ballot that would make local government representation more equitable by ensuring that the establishment of both Māori and general wards on district and regional councils follows the same legal process.

Currently, the establishment of Māori wards in local government can be put to a referendum, whereas general wards can’t be – they are decided by councils alone. MP Marama Davidson’s Local Electoral (Equitable Process for Establishing Māori Wards and Māori Constituencies) Amendment Bill would right this wrong by ensuring an equitable process.

“I’m really excited to be launching my new Member’s Bill today, which will ensure that the process for establishing Māori wards at a local government level is equitable and fair, and honours our commitments under Te Tiriti o Waitangi,” said Green Party Māori development spokesperson Marama Davidson.

“This unfair double standard in our electoral law works to limit Māori representation at local government level throughout the country. Removing this discriminatory provision is the right thing to do.

“My Bill is inspired by the work of former New Plymouth Mayor Andrew Judd, who unsuccessfully tried to establish a Māori ward in his district, and presented a petition to Parliament on this issue. We’re really proud to have Andrew’s support for this Bill.

“Ensuring that the establishment of Māori and general wards follows the same process is the very least we can do to ensure better Māori representation in local government so that our people have a voice in the decisions that affect us.

“The United Nations has noted that Aotearoa has ‘persistently low representation’ of Māori in local government positions. This is undoubtedly made worse by this double standard for establishing Māori wards.

“The Green Party has a proud history of standing up to honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi. This is a continuation of our work as the political leaders on advancing kaupapa Māori and honouring Te Tiriti,” Ms Davidson said.

Action

Virtual Events

We have activists across Aotearoa / New Zealand who are working hard to build a brighter future for our kids and grandkids. This page lists upcomin...
Take Action

Action

It's time to pay our essential workers a dignified wage

Our essential workers are the heroes getting us through the COVID-19 crisis, yet for too long they’ve been...
Take Action

Action

Join our call to stop funding fossil fuels!

We need to remove all public money managed by the Government from climate-changing fossil fuel industries.
Take Action

Action

Support our Climate Action Plan for bigger bolder climate action

We agree with all five of the School Strike for Climate's demands. Read more and sign the petition.
Take Action

Action

Show your support to end housing inequality

Our essential workers are the heroes getting us through the COVID-19 crisis, yet for too long they’ve been undervalued and many barely....
Take Action

Latest Local Government Announcements

Policy

Local Government Policy

Local government is essential to democracy. The actions of local governments should enhance the social, environmental, cultural, and economic wellb...
See More

Story

Government announces climate action plan

Climate Change Minister James Shaw has today released the Government’s Climate Action Plan in response to the Productivity Commission’s inquiry int...
Read More

Story

Eels a sign of the health of our creeks

Central government needs to resource local councils to protect our waterways, Green Party Water spokesperson Marama Davidson said today, following ...
Read More

Story

Ngāi Tahu Representation Bill would have been a step forward

The Green Party is disappointed that the Ngāi Tahu Representation Bill to increase tangata whenua representation on the Canterbury Regional Council...
Read More

Story

Time to remove Māori ward discrimination from law

The Green Party is renewing its call to remove the double standard that allows for referendum on the establishment of only Māori wards from law.
Read More

Story

Fight for better Māori representation in local govt to go on - Green Party media release

The Green Party is disappointed that its Member’s Bill to enable better Māori representation in local government was voted down last night, but is ...
Read More

Latest Māori Development Announcements

Policy

Kaupapa Māori

Aotearoa New Zealand can be a country where tikanga is respected, racism is eliminated, and the physical, emotional, and spiritual effects of colon...
See More

Story

Māori women in business contribute to our economy, whānau and communities

Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter has released a new report celebrating the contribution of Māori women in business across Aotearoa New Zealand.
Read More

Story

Police evictions at Ihumātao are an attack on mana motuhake

The Green Party support the mana whenua of Ihumātao and their right to peacefully protect their land, Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson said to...
Read More

Story

Encouraging sign for te reo Māori in schools

The Government’s plan to integrate te reo Māori into education is showing promising progress, said Green Party Māori Development spokesperson Maram...
Read More

Story

A much needed boost for Kōhanga reo

The Green Party welcomes the Government’s move to provide a funding boost to kōhanga reo, said Green Party Co-leader Marama Davidson. “We have seen...
Read More

Story

Ngāi Tahu Representation Bill would have been a step forward

The Green Party is disappointed that the Ngāi Tahu Representation Bill to increase tangata whenua representation on the Canterbury Regional Council...
Read More