Manufacturing news the Labour way

There have been a few news stories about happy low paid workers ecstatic that Labour’s new tax is great for them.

Ten bucks a week extra in her pay packet would make a huge difference to Tongan cleaner Mele Peaua and her large family.

Mrs Peaua, the mother of six children aged from eight to 18, takes home $434 a week from her 36 hours work as a cleaner at two Hutt Valley schools. She would use the extra $525 a year – $10 a week – that she would earn under Labour to buy more fruit and vegetables for her children.

“I need to get them to eat more healthy food. How can we have a better life if the children are not healthy children? I work two jobs and have no time at home for the children. I have to keep looking for more jobs and I am not at home for the children. Ten dollars more per week would give me great joy.”

Tapu Misa also quotes, the very accessible to the media, Mele Peaua:

Labour’s tax policy, which makes the first $5000 of income tax-free, will mean $10 extra a week for Mrs Peaua. It sounds like crumbs to me, but she told the Dom Post she’d use that to buy more fruit and vegetables for her children, which would be cheaper under Labour’s plan to make them GST-free.

“How can we have a better life if the children are not healthy children? I work two jobs and have no time at home for the children … Ten dollars more per week would give me great joy.” As would the $15 minimum wage promised by Labour.

Labour likes to refer media to Mele Peaua, they even use her in their press releases.

Su’a William Sio congratulated Mele Peaua, representing cleaners and the Service and Food Workers Union at the rally in Parliament grounds, for speaking out against what she called John Key’s ‘bad laws’.

Mele Peaua gets trotted out by Labour at every opportunity as a “Tongan school cleaner”, yet she’s on the Pacific Island committee of the SFWU and a key protester at Labour-organised rallies.

This is the same Service and Food Workers union that donated $20,000 plus labour to assist the Labour party in 2008.

When you see people trotted out in the media saying how wonderful something is it always pays to check their background. They may not be as independent in their thoughts and opinions as portrayed to gullible media who don’t know how to use Google.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.

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