Andrew Little's Speech to Green Party AGM 2016

Thank you very much.

I have accepted the invitation to speak to your conference out of a profound sense of responsibility.

I am here because I believe those on the progressive side of politics owe it to New Zealanders to offer the hope that change is possible.

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Putting people ahead of politics

In the coming weeks, John Key will decide whether or not to use a financial veto against families with new babies having 26 weeks paid parental leave.

Our Parliament has been debating this measure since 2012, when my Bill was first pulled from the ballot. For almost all of that time, a majority of MPs have supported this measure.

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Immigration - it's about basic fairness

Immigration is important to New Zealand. We’re a nation built on immigration. But our immigration system was never supposed to be used to prop up a low wage economy and exploit new migrants.

A new report from Treasury has warned the Government that immigration is increasingly being used to fill low-skill, low wage jobs, rather than to fill the skills shortages we need to grow our economy and create more jobs for everyone.

"It benefits us economically and enriches us culturally."

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Working together for change

When I became Labour leader, I made it clear that we couldn’t head into the next election leaving voters in doubt about what we stood for and who we’d work with.

Since then we’ve rebuilt Labour from our worst election defeat – uniting our caucus, reforming our Party and building a strong, progressive policy platform.

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Q+A: Labour and Greens Memorandum of Understanding

Why an MOU?

It is about being clear with New Zealanders that Labour and the Green Party will be working together to change the Government. We believe the interests of our movements and ideals can best be achieved by working co-operatively while respecting we are separate parties with our own policies and principles.

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Have health services been cut in your area?

Click here to use the Health Map

Over the last six years, National has cut $1.7 billion from our health system in real terms. As costs have increased, funding for our health services just hasn’t kept up.

And after cost pressures – like population growth, ageing and inflation – are taken into account, yesterday’s Budget announcements in health only continue the cuts to our health services.

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Andrew Little and Grant Robertson discuss Budget 2016

Middle New Zealand has again missed out in this year's Budget with not a single fix for the housing crisis, and health and education again woefully underfunded.

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The Budget in black and white

In three days’ time Bill English’s tie will make the news. In three days' time it's Budget Day. In media circles the Finance Minister’s tie traditionally plays a bellwether role, its colour and pattern seen as an indicator of what the Budget will contain.

That being the case then this year’s should be black and white because anything in between won’t cut it. There’s some really important issues the Government’s 8th Budget needs to address.  

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Andrew Little's pre-Budget speech 2016

Thanks so much for coming along today, and for giving up some of your weekend.

Today, I want to talk about the type of Budget that New Zealand needs to see this coming Thursday.

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Go ask WINZ

"All I can say to people if somebody is homeless they should go see Winz."

- John Key on what desperate families living in cars should do.

Here's 5 reasons why going to WINZ won’t necessarily help if you’re homeless:

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