ACC needs to be a fair system that is there for all New Zealanders to get help when they need it.
The Green Party supports equitable and adequate rehabilitation and compensation as part of a system that focuses on promoting good health, reducing the risk and impact of illness, impairment and injury, and improving quality of life.
It is vital that all of ACC remains a public body. Privatisation will lead to reduced services for accident victims and increased costs.
To help restore consistency with the community responsibility principle upon which ACC was founded and protect ACC from privatisation, ACC should be funded on the pay-as-you-go model where funding is designed to meet annual costs.
- Equitable rehabilitation for all people suffering impairment caused by injury, illness or other disability.
- The retention of public provision of rehabilitation and compensation for personal injury, funded through an equitable mix of levies on employers, employees, motor vehicle usage and general taxation.
Specific Policy Points
ACC Cover for Personal Injury
The Green Party will:
- Ensure that all people who have a genuine work-related gradual process injury, disease or infection, including occupational overuse injuries and chemical poisoning, can obtain ACC cover.
- Ensure that all people who receive unexpected and unintended injuries as a consequence of medical treatment can access ACC cover.
- Restore cover to all people who suffer mental injury by accident regardless of whether they were at work or whether there was a physical injury.
Adequate Rehabilitation and Fair Compensation
The Green Party believes that rehabilitation to the greatest extent practicable, rather than theoretical work capacity, ought to be the main focus of ACC. The Green Party will:
- Ensure Vocational Independence Assessments are reoriented so that their primary purpose is to help claimants plan how best to return as much as possible to their pre-injury life.
- Ensure a fairer assessment of income earned by temporary and seasonal workers.
- Ensure ACC payments are treated the same way as earned income when considering eligibility for income tested benefits e.g. working for families.
Culture of ACC
The Green Party will:
- Put the emphasis back on obtaining the best outcome for clients, rather than the best financial outcome for ACC.
- Support the development and funding of a strong network of skilled claimant advocates operating across the country to ensure that claimants receive their entitlements.