Bill English should be sticking it to the Australians rather than sticking by them and their dreadful treatment of Kiwis in detention centres, Acting Labour Leader Annette King says.
“To say there is no evidence that New Zealanders are facing ‘shocking or appalling’ treatment is itself both shocking and appalling.
“If someone taking their own life while waiting to be deported isn’t evidence that something is wrong, then I don’t know what is.
“There have been numerous reports from inside these detention centres on just how bad conditions are. Christmas Island, where almost 200 Kiwis are being held, is one of the worst, with a recent spike in self-harm and attempted suicides.
“If they were being held in any other foreign jail, I imagine Mr English would be somewhat concerned.
“As it is it’s taken almost a year for the Government to get off its comfy backside and start talking, and that’s only after publicity around these arrangements forced its hand.
“A comment here and a half promise there isn’t good enough.
“This is a human rights issue. Kiwis are getting a rough deal in Australia. Bill English should stick his reputation where his mouth is, get on a plane and sort it out.”