Voters to have the final veto on paid parental leave

New Zealanders will have the final right of veto on a Government that has ignored democracy and is out of touch with the pressures and demands on families, says Labour MP Sue Moroney.

“Today’s decision by National to veto 26 weeks paid parental leave by 2018 exposes their contempt for the needs of children and their families.

“They have overturned a vote made by the majority of MPs after careful scrutiny of the research, evidence and financial impact. In doing so, they have put politics ahead of people.

“There is no justification for a financial veto when John Key is indicating there will be $3 billion of tax cuts in 2017.

“Labour’s proposal to extend paid parental leave to 22 weeks next year and then to 26 weeks in 2018 has been the subject of two select committee hearings. During this process public support for this move has grown.

“The weight of public support has led to majority support in Parliament – in a modern democracy that should have seen this important support for families being implemented.

“However, the Government has blocked it in several ways over the last four years simply because it’s Labour’s idea.

“They haven’t been able to win the debate with the logic of their argument, so they have resorted to the extreme measure of using a veto against families.

“Next year’s general election is the voting public’s chance to issue a veto to National and put in place a Labour-led Government which will prioritise the needs of all children and their families,” Sue Moroney says.