Refugees: Does NZ really want more?

Andrew Little wants to double the refugee quota

Andrew Little wants to double the refugee quota

Nearly overnight we’ve arrived at a point, without any debate or public input, that we’ll have more refugees.

After years of lobbying, Amnesty International is finally confident the Government will increase New Zealand’s refugee quota.

Every party in Parliament has publicly backed raising the quota, except the one that counts — National.

Labour and the Greens want it doubled to 1500 at a minimum, with ACT and New Zealand First supporting a less dramatic increase.

“This has got beyond being a right/left political issue; this is a basic humanitarian one,” Amnesty International NZ executive director Grant Bayldon told Paul Henry this morning.

New Zealand ranks somewhere in the middle of the pack for accepting refugees on a per capita basis, and even lower when GDP is considered.

“We’re so far behind all the countries we compare ourselves to.”

Little wants more refugees

Last Week Labour leader Andrew Little visited the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan, home to about 80,000 Syrians. Mr Little says the experience strengthened his resolve to raise New Zealand’s quote to 1500.

Mr Bayldon says this isn’t surprising.

“You can’t meet the people in those circumstances without being affected and thinking New Zealand can do more… You meet people who used to be teachers, used to be nurses, they used to be builders and they just want to make a start. It’s always about the children — they want their children to have the opportunity to get to safety.”

The Government last year announced an emergency, one-off intake of 750 Syrian refugees, 600 of them on top of the quota.

Helen will need a change of underwear at all this support for her push to be the Leader of da World. This isn’t a biggie for National to cave in on.

National can look wise and considered but, in the mean time, the whole thing needs to look as if it’s inevitable to ensure Hells gets the job.


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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.