Issuu on Google+

UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

ISSUE No 1

UNANZ NEWS

ISSN 1179足8009 (print)

ISSN 1179足0817 (online)


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

ISSUE No 1

UNANZ News Contents In this issue:

UNANZ National Conference and AGM 3 Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination considers report of New Zealand 4 The UN and sustainability – helping NZ to engage with the global agenda. 11 The myth of nuclear necessity 11 Outcomes from the National Council meeting in February 1 2

Meeting with members of UNA Singapore Correspondence (affiliates & partners) Constitutional and organisational timeframes President's column Branch reports UN Youth President's report

13 14 14 15 17 19

Upcoming events:

1 9 March - Northern Branch AGM, 6-6:30 at Kinder House, Parnel l

UN Observances

26 March - Wellington Branch AGM, 5:30 at St. Andrew's Conference Room 1 . Keynote: MP Ken Graham 27 March - Wanganui Branch AGM, 4:30 pm at 4 Allison Street This month (date & venue to be confirmed) - Waikato Branch AGM THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

International Year of Water Cooperation International Year of Quinoa

2

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

ISSUE No 1

UNANZ National Conference and AGM 17 to 19 May 2013

UNANZ members and friends are warmly welcome to attend the 2013 National Conference, being held in Wellington 17­ 19 May. Friday's sessions include the Secondary Schools Speech Award finals on the topic “With competition for water increasing, how can the UN ensure water cooperation?”. The late afternoon session will feature panals on a range of topics, and the Conference Dinner will be held in the Evening. Saturday's program will feature invited speakers on New Zealand and Global Security ­ confirmed speakers include Colin Keating and Kennedy Graham, M.P. Sunday's program includes UNANZ AGM and National Council Meeting.

Friday 17 May

4:00 ­ 6:00 Special Topic Panels (TBC) 7:00

Conference dinner

Saturday 18 May Rutherford House 10:00 ­ 1:00 Keynote addresses and panel discussion. 1:00 ­ 2:45 Lunch (catered) 2:45 ­ 5:00 Sessions continue 7:00 ­ 10:00 Informal dinner

Sunday 19 May

Parliament Buildings

Rutherford House

Secondary Schools Speech Award finals 1:00

Opening and welcome

1:30

2013 final Panel discussions

3:30

Rutherford House

10:00 ­ 12:00 Annual General Meeting 12:00 ­ 1:00 ­

1:00 Lunch (Catered) 3:30 National Council Meeting

Afternoon Tea

THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

3

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

COMMITTEE ON ELIMINATION OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION CONSIDERS REPORT OF NEW ZEALAND

22 February 201 3 The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination today completed its consideration of the combined eighteenth to twentieth periodic report of New Zealand on its implementation of the

The Honourable Judith Collins, Minister of Justice and Minister for Ethnic Affairs

provisions of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. Presenting the report, Judith Collins said that New Zealand took pride in the promotion of human rights and was taking measures to promote the equal treatment of all its citizens, reduce barriers to education, establish a comprehensive resettlement strategy for refugees, facilitate the integration of Maori in society, and address the disparities among different ethnic groups in collaboration with local communities. Steps were also being taken to reduce the number of working-age persons receiving benefits by 201 7 and to reduce the incidence of offending and re-offending among Maori and Pacific people. An independent Constitutional Advisory Panel was currently reviewing New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements, including Maori representation in Parliament and in local government. THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

Committee Experts noted that New Zealand had implemented most of the recommendations made during the last review; and asked questions about the status of the Treaty of Waitangi in domestic law, steps taken to tackle the problem of structural discrimination against Maori and Pacific people, the vulnerable state of the Maori and other community languages, the problem of hate language, and the situation of migrant workers. The Committee also raised issues related to the protection of Maori rights, the transposition into domestic legislation of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the effects of Christchurch earthquakes and of the global economic crisis on vulnerable groups, the overrepresentation of Maori in New Zealand’s prison population, and disparities among different ethnic groups in education and employment. In concluding remarks, Carlos Vázquez, Country Rapporteur for New Zealand, said that the human rights situation in New Zealand was very positive and that remaining challenges were being addressed. He noted that there were many examples of best practices which would be recommended to other countries. The Committee recommended that close attention was paid to continued consultations with the Maori community on matters affecting them. Judith Collins, Minister of Justice and Minister for Ethnic Affairs, thanked the Committee for their insightful questions and said that New Zealand pursued an evolutionary and sometimes revolutionary approach in its fight against racial discrimination. The delegation of New Zealand included representatives from the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry for Ethnic Affairs, the Ministry of Maori Development, the Crown Law Office, and the Permanent Mission of New Zealand to the United Nations Office at Geneva. The next public meeting of the Committee will take place at 3 pm on Friday, 22 February, when it will begin its consideration of the combined thirteenth and fourteenth periodic report of the Dominican Republic (CERD/C/DOM/1 3-1 4).

Report

The combined eighteenth to twentieth periodic report of New Zealand can be read here (CERT/NZL/1 8-20). Presentation of the Report

Judith Collins said that New Zealand, a multi-racial and multi-cultural nation, took pride in the promotion of human rights and the equal treatment of all its citizens. The ancestors of the indigenous Maori had arrived in New Zealand a thousand years ago and by the late 1 8th century there had been over 1 00,000 Maori in the country. Europeans had started settling in New Zealand around the same time and continued to arrive in increasing numbers during the 1 9th century. The British Crown, which gained the right to govern New Zealand, had guaranteed Maori full protection of their interests and status. In 1 867 the 4

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

Parliament had established four Maori seats to give Maori a direct say in the political life of New Zealand. The Maori seats remained in Parliament today and the Treaty of Waitangi was recognized as the nation’s founding document. In 1 975 New Zealand had established the Waitangi Tribunal to hear Maori grievances against the Crown for breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi. Resolution of Maori grievances was achieved through Treaty settlements, which were agreements between the Crown and Maori claimant groups and included cultural, financial or commercial redress. Since 1 975, 59 Deeds of Settlement had been signed between the Crown and Maori. In 2008, New Zealand set the goal of settling all historical Treaty of Waitangi claims by 201 4. In the mid-1 960s, persons from the Pacific had started coming to New Zealand and today the country’s Pacific population was around 230,000. New Zealand’s immigration policy had changed in 1 975 and 1 987 and the primary criterion for admitting immigrants was qualifications, not race. A large flow of migrants had arrived from Asia and New Zealand’s largest city, Auckland, was today home to around 200 different ethnic groups. Many New Zealanders identified with more than one ethnicity and interethnic marriages were a common phenomenon. For New Zealand the Pacific island region was integral to its national identity and foreign policy, and a considerable proportion of New Zealand’s diplomatic resources were invested in the region. The maintenance of democracy, the rule of law, and human rights in the Pacific region mattered greatly to New Zealand. Through the New Zealand Aid Programme the country contributed to the work of the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, which maintained two regional offices in the Pacific. New Zealand was reducing barriers to education by funding schools to waive primary school fees in the Pacific, which had led to increased primary school enrolment. Sustainable and equitable access to safe water and sanitation to Pacific peoples to support improved public health and promote sustainable development. Moreover, New Zealand remained actively engaged in peacekeeping and reconstruction missions in Afghanistan, Solomon Islands and East Timor. New Zealand police was part of the Pacific Prevention of Domestic Violence Programme, along with New Zealand Aid and the Pacific Islands Chiefs of Police. A comprehensive resettlement strategy for refugees had recently been put in place and 750 persons per year were accepted for resettlement. Women at risk, persons with disabilities, and persons with family already in New Zealand were allowed to settle in the country. New Zealand was a constitutional monarchy and its THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

political system was a unitary parliamentary democracy with a single government and legal system. Citizens could vote once they had been residents for a year. Maori representation in Parliament was a reflection of New Zealand’s population and underscored the country’s commitment to Maori integration. An independent Constitutional Advisory Panel was currently reviewing aspects of New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements, including Maori representation in Parliament and in local government, and the role of the Treaty of Waitangi within constitutional arrangements. New Zealand was committed to addressing disparities between different ethnic groups in collaboration with local communities. Aware that Maori and Pacific peoples tended to fare worse than the general population in the areas of health, education and employment, New Zealand had identified a set of key result areas for the public service under the banner “Better Public Services” and aimed to reduce crime, boost skills and employment, and support vulnerable children. In the area of health, in particular, immunization had been prioritized and assistance was offered to pregnant Maori women so they would enrol with a physician before their babies were born. New Zealand had allocated 24 million dollars to reduce the incidence of rheumatic fever. Other health problems targeted included mental illness, cancer, diabetes and obesity. In the area of education, New Zealand had a high performing education system, although the gap between high and low performing students was very wide. The pattern was gradually changing and the rate of participation of Maori and Pacific people in education was increasing. National standards had been established to set clear expectations for students to meet in reading, writing and mathematics during their first eight years at school. Specific targets had been set to improve educational outcomes and new approaches were developed to improve the way in which the needs of vulnerable families were met. The teaching of Maori language and culture was part of the general school curriculum, and Maori was one of New Zealand’s official languages, along with English and sign languages. New Zealand’s economy had been affected by the global financial crisis, which was reflected in a sharp increase in unemployment. Maori and Pacific people were particularly affected by unemployment, which created a dependency on State welfare. New Zealand aimed to reduce the number of working-age persons receiving benefits by 30 per cent by 201 7. In 2011 a Youth Employment Package had been established to promote on-the-job training and to subsidize employers who employed young persons in permanent positions. 5

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

The over-representation of Maori and Pacific persons in the criminal justice system, both as prison population and as victims of crime, was a serious matter of concern. Specific programmes were in place to address those complex issues in collaboration with the wider community, with a particular focus on reducing offending and reoffending among Maori and Pacific people. Funding for alcohol and drug treatment services had been increased in order to cut down on the proportion of crime attributable to drug and alcohol abuse. The Adult Alcohol and Drug Treatment Court gave offenders the opportunity to confront drug and alcohol dependency. New Zealand’s police had adopted policies to recruit from ethnic groups and minorities. Prisons were improving the way in which they responded to ethnic diversity and prisoners were strongly encouraged to engage in formal training and employment activities. Asians were more likely than other ethnic groups to face discrimination and harassment in their employment setting. The Office of Ethnic Affairs sought to address discrimination in employment settings by offering strategic advice on how to manage diversity in the workplace through intercultural awareness and communication training. The Supreme Court was currently considering a case put forward by the New Zealand Maori Council, challenging the Crown’s plan for the partial sale of shares in the Mighty River Power Company. The Crown was committed to honouring its obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi and would continue to do so through the mixed ownership model.

Questions by Experts

Carloc Valquez, Country Rapporteur for New Zealand, said that New Zealand counted with a developed framework for dealing with human rights issues and had implemented most of the recommendations the Committee had made during the last review. Mr. Vázquez noted that the Convention was not automatically transposed into domestic legislation but had to be incorporated in national law by statute, and requested additional information on the ongoing constitutional reform. The status of the Treaty of Waitangi in domestic law was another issue of concern, especially since the statutes relating to the Convention were not binding. The 201 4 aspirational deadline for receiving complaints relating to the Waitangi Tribunal might not allow enough time for the filing of all complaints. Had New Zealand considered adopting the practice of a formal written statement whenever the recommendations of the Waitangi Tribunal were not adopted? The violation of Maori water-related rights and of their right to consultation was a serious issue and further details were requested. Regarding structural discrimination, many positive THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

steps had been taken by New Zealand to address the issue, but the Committee was concerned that the problem remained. An examination of practices in the areas of justice, health and education pointed to a broader problem of structural discrimination against Maori and Pacific people. Recognizing that there was a problem was the first step for dealing with it, what else could be done to expedite the process? The Maori language was in a vulnerable state and required urgent protection. What plans did New Zealand have to further protect the Maori language? The degree of financial support given by New Zealand to community languages was a matter of concern and more information was needed on this regard. New Zealand had agreed that the problem of the use of hate language required attention but had given priority to other issues. The statements recently made by a Member of Parliament which had been highly derogatory of Muslims were shocking and offensive. How did New Zealand propose to tackle similar problems? The non-recognition by employers of foreign qualifications and of non-New Zealand work experience constituted discrimination. How was New Zealand dealing with these issues? Also, what was the rationale behind the re-organization of the Race Relations Commissioner’s Office? The Committee had learnt that the confidence of the Maori in New Zealand’s police had been shaken because of “Operation 8”, undertaken a few years ago. What was the current situation in this regard? Could the delegation provide more information on the “Three Strikes Law” and the effect it might have had on society? An Expert requested more information concerning reports about the granting of land to Maori communities by the State and on the issue of land claims by the Maori in general. Regarding existing legislation on marine resources and the management of the seabed, the Expert noted that there had been positive developments, with a new law in place, and he requested additional information. He also noted that New Zealand had taken a highly positive view of migrants in recent years and wanted to know whether there were any particular employment issues relating to that development. Another Expert said that New Zealand had made significant progress in formally recognizing the rights of Maori people. Was there any intention to review and amend domestic laws so as to facilitate the transposition into domestic legislation of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples? An Expert commended New Zealand on the large number of foreign students and on the steps that taken to improve the living standards of minorities such as the Maori. He requested further details regarding complaints of racial discrimination received by the Commission of Human Rights. What were the 6

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

differences between the system of protection New Zealand offered to the Maori and the provisions made in the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples? Another Expert asked whether the economic downturn in New Zealand had had a negative impact on specific communities. Was there specific data on this issue? What measures was New Zealand taking to offer additional assistance to vulnerable groups who might have suffered more during the earthquakes of 201 0 and 2011 ? How did New Zealand go about supporting non-governmental organizations and what specific programmes did it have in place? What was New Zealand doing to tackle the problem of recognition of foreign qualifications? The Expert also requested further details on incidents of discrimination experienced by women from minority groups and asked what New Zealand was doing to deal with such problems. An Expert welcomed the measures which had been taken to ensure respect of the specificities of ethnic groups such as the Maori whenever they came into contact with the police authorities, and requested a detailed account of these, other related measures and their outcomes. After thanking the delegation for its open and frank report and presentation, a Committee Expert said that the set of initiatives and policies which New Zealand had taken were impressive. He pointed out, however, that policy monitoring and evaluation were equally important and said that he would have welcomed more information on the methodology and findings of the Annual Survey on Perceived Discrimination, which could complement ethnic statistics. An Expert congratulated New Zealand on what it had achieved since its last review and on the signing of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and said that she hoped that New Zealand would withdraw its reservations to the Declaration. Was there disaggregated data on how Maori and other minority women fared in education and employment; and what was being done to address the challenges faced by women from minority groups? Could New Zealand provide assurances that the Maori would be involved in negotiations of the free trade agreement which the country was conducting with other States? Another Expert noted the disparities among European, Asian and minority communities in terms of schooling and said that reducing disparities in education remained a significant challenge. The situation in education was closely linked to the situation in the area of employment. Given that there was a tendency to focus on urban areas as far as job creation was concerned, had New Zealand considered the possibility of creating more jobs for Maori in areas where it was easier for Maori to continue to pursue a traditional lifestyle? Disparities in life expectancy were also well-documented. What additional preventive measures could be taken by THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

New Zealand to further reduce the gap between the life expectancy of Europeans and the Maori? The Expert asked for further details on measures taken to deal with the significant over-representation of Maori in New Zealand’s prison population. Exactly what were the fishing quotas for the Maori people?

Response by Delegation

The delegation said that there were several groups that spoke for the Maori in New Zealand, because Maori belonged to many different tribes. New Zealand was looking closely at cases of Maori coming into the criminal justice system as victims of crime. Maori was an official language of New Zealand and Maori terms were used extensively both in everyday life and in the report which had been submitted to the Committee. Social harmony was what New Zealand was striving for, looking to build on its long history of democracy. The statements about Muslim persons made by a Member of Parliament, referred to in the Committee, had infuriated the other Members of Parliament and New Zealand society in general. The delegation said that incidents of raciallymotivated crime were taken very seriously by New Zealand. Structural discrimination affected more severely the Maori and Pacific peoples. The Commission was actively addressing issues of racial inequality, structural discrimination and indigenous rights. Disparities in the enjoyment of human rights remained a complex issue that needed to be addressed with the collaboration of the civil society. The Christchurch earthquakes have had devastating effects for all ethnic groups, including the Maori and Pacific peoples. A Maori support organization had been established, which connected Maori with government facilities and agencies. Social media had been a vital tool for communicating domestically and abroad. There were several proactive organizations working to improve the situation of Maori groups across the country. For example, the “By Maori For Maori” Organization provided training, career advancement advice and scholarships to Maori persons. The aim was to build a Maori workforce by blending health and employment expertise, which would help to reduce crime rates and improve the overall situation of Maori. New Zealand was a successful multi-ethnic country, thanks to the transparency and lack of corruption in the police and the judiciary. Police and justice were working on a pilot project to collect data on victims of crimes, including information about ethnicity and age, in order to draw more precise conclusions. Crime statistics showed that the crime rate in New Zealand was currently the lowest recorded in several decades. Poor education and socio-economic disadvantage rather than ethnicity were at the source of the disadvantaged place of the Maori in society. New Zealand was working with local Maori tribes to improve youth-related responses and to help young 7

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

Maori out of the cycle of crime. Education officers would be placed in youth courts attended by young Maori who had committed offenses to help them get back on a positive pathway. Regarding adult offenders, the focus was on reducing reincidence through the motivation and rehabilitation of prisoners. Assistance was also provided to prisoners who were close to release in order to facilitate their reintegration in society. Concerning the role of the police, the policecommunity relation in New Zealand was unique, and the police worked with many ethnic groups to make New Zealand a safe place. Police officers did not carry firearms but they had been recently allowed to use tasers. Tasers were used very rarely by appropriately trained officers and only for protection, not for enforcement. The delegation stressed that here was no connection between the use of tasers and the ethnicity of the person on whom they were used. All New Zealand police tasers were fitted with a digital video recording device which provided information on their use. The “three strikes system” only dealt with serious violent and sexual offenders who had already been convicted of two specified offences, and for which they had received a warning and a final warning. No work had been done on the impact of that law on racial minorities. New Zealand predicted that this system would significantly reduce the number of prisoners in the next decade. Settlement agreements were binding by law and were made up of five parts: a historical account of the breach, an acknowledgement of the breach and its consequences, an apology, and a cultural, commercial or financial redress. There were specific guidelines in place which governed the procedure followed in the case of settlement agreement to ensure, among other things, fairness and transparency of information and that Maori entitlements and legal rights were not affected. New Zealand had engaged with 80 different groups to settle their claims. Regarding the 2011 Marine and Coastal Area Act, the delegation said that the Act was the product of extensive consultations and was the Government’s response to criticism voiced against discriminatory effects on Maori resulting from the Foreshore and Seabed Act of 2004. Concerning the role of the Human Rights Commission, the delegation said that the Human Rights Amendment Bill had changed the structure and functions of the Commission, including removing the statutory positions of the Race Relations Commissioner and Equal Employment Opportunities Commissioner. Nevertheless, the Bill retained the focus on race relations and equal employment opportunities by requiring full-time Commissioners to be made responsible for those areas, so it did not THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

diminish the functions of the Commission. The Law Commission had proposed changes in key areas, including legislation responding to harmful digital behaviour and digital communications, and combating bullying in all its forms, including cyberbullying. In the last five years, 60 per cent of race-related complaints to the Human Rights Commission were from men and 40 per cent from women. Among them, 8 per cent of these complaints were from Pacific people, 1 6 per cent were from Maori, 23 per cent were from Asian, and 29 per cent were from New Zealand Europeans or Pakeha. In cases where mediation was not successful, the Commission advised complainants of their right to proceed to the Human Rights Review Tribunal. The Commission was not aware of any significant judicial cases involving racial discrimination. Concerning the Treaty of Waitangi in modern society, the delegation said that Maori were entitled to the same rights as all other New Zealand citizens and that Maori had particular rights and interests to selfdetermination with regard to their properties. The Waitangi Tribunal was responsible for interpreting the meaning of the Treaty of Waitangi and had developed a set of principles about how the Treaty should work in modern society. Recent claims included the relationship of Maori tertiary institutions to the Ministry of Education and the provision of health services to Maori people. There were different expressions of the Treaty of Waitangi principles in New Zealand law, ranging from high-level statutory weighting to lower levels of statutory weighting. The decision about which statutory weighting was applied was taken on a caseby-case basis and reflected the level of Maori interests in the matter at hand. The Maori language was recognized as an official language and New Zealand had a long-standing commitment to take steps to protect it. However, recognizing the fragile status of the Maori language, the Government was putting together a new language strategy for 201 3 to help the revitalization of the Maori language. The Wai 262 claim dealt with Maori intellectual property rights. New Zealand did not have a domestic policy covering the interface between intellectual property and traditional knowledge and cultural expressions but there were certain initiatives in the Trade Marks Act and in the proposed Patents Bill which covered these issues. Regarding the Mixed Ownership Model Act and Maori water-rights claims under the Treaty of Waitangi, the delegation said that the proposed sale of 49 per cent of shares in power-generating State-owned enterprises had been challenged in claims before the Waitangi Tribunal and the courts. The sale had been deferred pending resolution of these claims, which 8

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

contended that the partial share sales obstructed the Government in recognizing the claimants’ treaty interests. New Zealand believed that the sale concerned shareholdings in publicly owned companies that provided hydroelectric and other energy and therefore it did not affect ownership or regulation of related natural resources. The Government had consulted with Maori on the proposed legislative changes and the Maori raised concerns about their rights over water. Concerning questions about Maori commercial fisheries and commercial aquaculture, the delegation said that under the Maori Fisheries Act 2004, the Maori had been allocated more than 80 per cent of Fisheries settlement assets worth more than 500 million dollars, made up of deep-water fish quota, inshore fish quota, and shares in Aotearoa Fisheries. On the matter of the administration of Maori land, the delegation clarified that there were two types of Maori land. First, land which had been retained in Maori ownership since the Waitangi Treaty and was organized in several thousand blocs owned by multiple owners and managed by committees of owners. That land was administered by the Maori Land Act 1 993. The second class of Maori land included land which had been returned to Maori as part of cultural or commercial redress under Treaty Settlements, and was managed by Maori tribal authorities. In response to questions about migrants in New Zealand, the delegation said that migrant workers were chosen primarily on the basis of skills. According to national surveys, the majority of the population believed that Asians were most discriminated against and many Asians said that they had experienced discrimination. Overall, however, New Zealand society recognized the contribution that migrants made. It was reported that over 70 per cent of all migrants were participating in the labour force and the majority of those migrating to New Zealand did not have problems finding employment. A number of public and private initiatives were in place to help migrants find employment and to give them access to English language classes. Training on how to manage diversity and inter-cultural communication in the workplace was also provided. Recognition of skills and qualifications was particularly important in the healthcare sector where the risks were higher. A number of steps had been taken to help migrants to obtain recognized qualifications. Programmes were in place to support ethnic minority women, who were under-represented in high-level positions. New Zealand had a zero tolerance policy with regards to violence in the family, and community networks supporting women who had experienced violence had been developed. Planning was underway to ensure that the mass arrival of asylum seekers could be managed effectively and, to that end, the Immigration THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

Amendment Bill was currently before Parliament and was expected to be passed in 201 3. Regarding the discriminatory statements about Muslims recently made by a Member of Parliament, the delegation said that a motion about respect for religious diversity had been passed in Parliament without debate, and a number of articles expressing opposition to those statements had since appeared in the media. New Zealand’s Law Commission was looking for ways to deal with the problem of hate speech and was currently in the process of proposing law amendments in order to tackle the relatively new phenomenon of cyber-bullying. It was generally felt that mediation, wherever possible, was far more effective in changing human behaviour than prosecution. New Zealand recognized the expertise of many nongovernmental organizations by contracting their services to provide social support to communities. Non-governmental organizations also had access to State grant funding. The Office of Ethnic Affairs sought to increase responsiveness to linguistically diverse communities by providing Language Line, a telephone interpreting service that offered clients of participating agencies free services in 44 languages. More than 90 public agencies used Language Line to assist in their interactions with clients. Inciting racial disharmony was an offence under Section 1 31 of the Human Rights Act and persons affected by racial disharmony could claim compensation and other civil remedies under Section 61 of the Human Rights Act. There had only been one instance of prosecution under Section 1 31 in 2008.

Questions by Experts

An Expert asked about perceptions about the state of ethnic relations in New Zealand’s society and drew attention to reported Pakeha claims that reverse racism existed in favour of, rather than against, Maori. The Expert asked whether efforts were made to address public perceptions of racism and to explain related issues to the wider public. A Committee Expert asked whether New Zealand had some kind of customary justice system and said that a distinction should be made between the State’s justice system and the development of a truly customary or tribal justice. Were there traditional forms of justice and did the State accept that traditional justice prevailed in certain sectors such as civilian life? A further question was asked about the role of sport in combating racial discrimination in New Zealand. Also, was the Maori language taught in early childhood education?

Response by Delegation

The delegation said that sport in New Zealand functioned as a major unifying element for its multi9

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

ethnic, multi-cultural society and that the country saw itself as a leader in sport internationally. Anybody could be subject to discrimination and in certain cases even New Zealand Europeans and Pakeha had made complaints about racial discrimination. It was difficult for persons who had always been part of the majority to understand what it was like being part of a minority. It was important for citizens not to feel threatened by racial equality policies and this could be achieved through education. Customary processes were taken into account and there had been several initiatives to allow for greater flexibility so that fora which were more culturally aligned with Maori and Pacific peoples would help improve the justice system. Early childhood education in Maori was provided through “language nests” as part of the early childhood immersion education system. However, early childhood education in Maori was optional and the decision remained with the parents. Teacher supply was an ongoing issue because, as time went by, the pool of Maori language teachers decreased. The problem was being addressed through a series of relevant programmes and policies.

Concluding remarks

Carlos Vazquez, said that the human rights situation in New Zealand was very positive overall. Challenges remained were being addressed and there were many examples of best practices which would be recommended to other countries. The Committee hoped that the concerns that had expressed during the interactive dialogue would be taken into account and that recommendations would be fully implemented. Close attention should be paid to the continued importance of consultations with the Maori community on matters affecting them. Judith Collins, thanked the Committee Experts for their insightful questions and said that the level of engagement of New Zealand’s non-governmental organizations with the work of the National Human Rights Commission was very helpful New Zealand pursued an evolutionary and sometimes revolutionary approach in its fight against racial discrimination, and the issues that had been raised in relation to the situation the Maori community were taken very seriously. For use of the information media; not an official record CRD1 3/01 0E

THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

The UN and Sustainability – Helping NZ to engage with the global agenda. Dr Gray Southon, President Tauranga Branch

While the Rio+20 sustainability conference and the Doha Climate change conference have had very disappointing outcomes, that is by no means the end of the story. The UN has been coordinating and supporting a multitude of activities around the world over a wide range of topics including technical, social, organisational and political themes. What’s more, they have brought much of it together on an integrated web site called http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/ which provides customised user accounts. There are also many other UN and international and sources of information. Furthermore, recent meetings have revealed renewed energy even in the vexed issue of Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP). See http://www.unep.org/gc/gc27/. But what does this mean for New Zealand? The global sustainability revolution that we are facing requires major changes in our technology, social and economic systems as well as our governance. There will be a wide range of initiatives around the world, and there will be much to learn from rich and poor alike. And what about NZ? While there is much disappointment about the government’s position, there are an amazing variety of organisations of many different types that are contributing to sustainability in some way. These range from religious organisations to research institutions, and include business, professional, university and environmental organisations, many with a strong community focus. However, these groups tend to be fragmented and may be poorly connected with the wider UN and international scene. However, a summary of these organisations are being developed. This is where students can make an impact – especially university students who want to learn what they can about the realities of activities in their particular speciality, both in NZ and overseas, as well as make a positive contribution. By studying international developments as well as NZ activities, they can explore ways of making useful connections 10

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

ISSUE No 1

The Myth of Nuclear Necessity

and contributions in understandings, as well as get to know the key leaders and practitioners both here and overseas. Further, they can learn more about the way that the UN works to bring peoples and nations together to further the interests of humanity.

WARD WILSON The New York Times, Opinion Pages Published: January 1 3, 201 3

How’s this for a selling approach?

Do you want to: Make a real contribution to sustainability? Engage with action in New Zealand and internationally? Get opportunities for really practical and valuable projects? Develop connections and understandings that will support your studies and career? Link with others who are also part of the action? Then check this out!

And a more detailed statement

An opportunity to make a distinctive contribution to the development of Sustainability in New Zealand, and even globally. An opportunity to be engage with activities around the globe, as well as in NZ, at any level – science, technology, environment, community, energy, food, transport, land, oceans, economics and politics: local, national and global. Get to know what is happening and network with the activists. Work from your own interests in sustainability, find out what the UN and others are doing globally, and send that to relevant organisations in NZ. Find out what they are doing, and how they engage with the global agendas. Analyse action and outcomes, compare NZ with overseas, ask the key question: • What are the critical issues? • What is actually happening? • how can we do better? • Who needs to know about it? • How can you make a difference? The UN is working to move the world forward – initiating activities, funding others, coordinating, sharing ideas and technology, and promoting policy development at all levels. Network with other students taking up this challenge, and with activists internationally. Earn academic credits if you are doing a suitable subject. We have an extensive compilation of sustainability related organisations in NZ, and there are a host of UN related resources.

Interested?

Send me an email: Gray Southon gray@southon.net THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

FIVE years ago, four titans of American foreign policy – the former secretaries of state George P. Shultz and Henry A. Kissinger, the former defense secretary William J. Perry and the former senator Sam Nunn – called for “a world free of nuclear weapons,” giving new momentum to an idea that had moved from the sidelines of pacifist idealism to the center of foreign policy debate. America’s 76 million baby boomers grew up during the cold war, when a deep fear of nuclear weapons permeated American life, from duck-and-cover school drills to backyard fallout shelters. Then, in the 1 980s, President Ronald Reagan’s leadership, combined with immense anti-nuclear demonstrations, led to negotiations with the Soviet Union that drastically reduced the size of the two superpowers’ nuclear arsenals. Sadly, the abolition movement seems stalled. Part of the reason is fear of nuclear weapons in the hands of others: President George W. Bush exploited anxieties over nuclear weapons to justify the 2003 invasion of Iraq; most Republican presidential candidates last year said they would fight a war with Iran rather than allow it to get the bomb. There is also a small group of people who still believe fervently in nuclear weapons. President Obama had to buy passage of the New START treaty with Russia, in 201 0, with a promise to spend $1 85 billion to modernize warheads and delivery systems over 1 0 years – revealing that while support for nuclear weapons may not be broad, it runs deep. That support endures because of five widely held myths. The first is the myth that nuclear weapons altered the course of World War II. Leaving aside the morality of America’s decision to drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, new research by the historian Tsuyoshi Hasegawa and other scholars shows that Japan surrendered not because of the atom bomb but because the Soviets renounced neutrality and joined the war. Sixty-six Japanese cities had already been destroyed by conventional weapons – two more did not make the difference. Attributing surrender to the bomb was also convenient for Japan’s leaders, allowing them to blame defeat on a “miracle” weapon. Second is the myth of “decisive destruction.” Mass destruction doesn’t win wars; killing soldiers does. No war has ever been won simply by killing civilians. The 1 941 -44 siege of Leningrad didn’t deter Soviet 11

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

leaders from pressing the fight against Hitler. Nor did the 1 945 firebombing of Dresden force Germany to submit. As long as an army has a fighting chance at victory, wars continue. Building ever more destructive weapons simply increases the horror of war, not the certainty of ending it. Third is the myth of reliable nuclear deterrence. Numerous leaders have taken risks and acted aggressively during nuclear crises. In 1 962, President John F. Kennedy and his advisers knew that blockading Cuba risked nuclear war; they mentioned the possibility 60 times while debating their options. Yet they went ahead. Nuclear proponents might argue that no cold war crisis ever erupted into nuclear war, so deterrence must work. But they’re moving the goal posts. Originally it was claimed that nuclear weapons would assure success in negotiations, prevent any sort of attack – conventional or nuclear – and allow countries to protect their friends with a nuclear umbrella. When the Russians weren’t intimidated during talks after World War II, the claim about negotiations was dropped. When the Yom Kippur War and the Falkland Islands War showed that fighting against nucleararmed countries was possible, the prevention of conventional war claim was dropped. The nuclear umbrella claim ought to have been dropped at the same time, but there was too much American foreign policy riding on it for anyone to make this argument. After all, if Britain couldn’t deter an attack on its own far-flung islands, how could deterrence prevent attacks on other countries? Fourth is the myth of the long peace: the argument that the absence of nuclear war since 1 945 means nuclear weapons have “kept the peace. ”But we don’t accept proof by absence in any circumstance where there is real risk. We wouldn’t fly an airline that claimed to have invented a device that prevented metal fatigue, proved it by equipping 1 00 planes with the devices for one year without a single crash, and then suddenly ceased all metal-fatigue inspections and repairs, and decided instead to rely solely on these new devices. The last and most stubborn myth is that of irreversibility. Whenever idealists say that they want to abolish nuclear weapons, so-called realists shake their heads and say, in tones of patient condescension. “You can’t stuff the nuclear genie back in the bottle.” This is a specious argument. It’s true that no technology is ever disinvented, but technology does fall out of use all the time. (If you don’t believe me, try to get tech support on any electronic device more than three years old.) Devices disappear either because they are displaced by better technology or because they simply weren’t good. The question isn’t whether nuclear weapons can be disinvented, but whether they are useful. And their usefulness is questionable, given that no one has found an THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

occasion to use them in over 67 years. Not everyone wants nuclear weapons. What most people don’t realize is that 1 2 countries have either abandoned nuclear programs, dismantled existing weapons, as South Africa did in the early 1 990s, or handed them over, as Kazakhstan did after the 1 991 breakup of the Soviet Union. By contrast, only nine have nukes today (the United States, Russia, Britain, France, China, India, Israel, Pakistan and North Korea). It’s often assumed that Israel would be the last nation to give up nuclear weapons, given its history and a deep sense of responsibility to protect the Jewish people after the horrors of the Holocaust. But Israel has a powerful conventional military, is allied with the strongest country in the world and its leaders have a keen appreciation of military realities. They understand that nukes pose a greater danger to small countries than large ones. Twenty nuclear weapons used on Israel would do far more overlapping damage than 20 used on Iran. Small nations have always been vulnerable. In a world without nuclear weapons they would preserve themselves as they always have: by forming alliances with the powerful and avoiding antagonizing neighbors. France, not Israel, would most likely be the last country to give up nuclear weapons, which help preserve its image as a world power. In a nuclear-free world, France would just be another middle-size power with great cuisine. The real value of nuclear bombs is as status symbols, not as practical weapons. America and other nuclear powers must pursue the gradual abolition of nuclear weapons, but it will not be easy. Many leaders have little interest in giving up power, real or perceived. Any agreement would have to include stringent inspections and extensive safeguards. It would have to include all current nuclear-armed states in a complicated diplomatic process. But bans on other dangerous but clumsy armaments, like chemical and biological weapons, have been negotiated in the past. These bans – like laws – are sometimes broken. But the world is far safer with the bans than it would be without them. As Reagan knew, nuclear weapons make the world more dangerous, not less. Imagine arming a bank guard with dynamite and a lighter and you get a good idea of nuclear weapons’ utility: powerful, but too clumsy to use. Nuclear weapons were born out of fear, nurtured in fear and sustained by fear. They are dinosaurs – an evolutionary dead end. The trend in warfare today is toward smaller, smarter, more effective precisionguided weapons. Nuclear weapons – extremely dangerous and not very useful – are the wave of the past. Ward Wilson, a senior fellow at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey Institute of International Studies, is the author of “Five Myths About Nuclear Weapons.” 12

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

NATIONAL COUNCIL MEETING REPORT

UNANZ first National Council Meeting for 201 3 was held on Saturday, 23 February, at St Andrew’s on The Terrace, Wellington. The twelve council members present represented the Canterbury (Mikael Gartner), Northern (Jean-Paul Bizoza), Tauranga (Gray Southern), Wellington (Robin Halliday), and UN Youth (Scott Bickerton) Branches, plus special officers for Peace & Security (Helena McMullen), Humanitarian Affairs (Mikael Gartner), Human Rights (Lachlan Mackay), and UN Renewal (Gray Southern). Additional members present were Graham Hassall, Izolda Kazemzadeh, Lucas Davies, John Morgan, and Joy Dunsheath. The National President, Graham Hassall, commenced the meeting by reviewing the fundamental purposes of UNANZ and the roles of the National Council, in particular. National Council sets the general policy directions for UNANZ and its functions are spelt out in the Constitution. Much of the discussion focused on finances, on activities in the Branches, and the work of the Special Officers. The relationship between UNANZ and the “We The Peoples Trust” was explained. The trust manages funds on behalf of, and for the benefit of, UNANZ, but at the present time the Trust is not providing sufficient funds to cover the range of activities that UNANZ anticipates undertaking. The Council decided that the National President would write to the Trustees explaining the situation, but also decided that additional fund-raising measures, including membership drives, should be undertaken at both national and branch level.

Special Officer Reports

SO for Peace and Security Helena McMullen raised the issue of the arrest of Joseph Kony, who is wanted for Crimes against Humanity by the International Criminal Court. UNANZ will write a letter to the Minister for Foreign Affairs encouraging action in upholding the rule of law and the authority of the international judicial system. SO for Human Rights Lachlan Mackay reported on a Lunch for UNANZ affiliates who are engaged in Human Rights advocacy held to mark Human Rights Day (December 1 0th) in 201 2. Lachlan also reported on the Universal Periodic Review as applied to New Zealand. SO for Humanitarian Affairs Mikael Gartner reported on opportunities such as Pecha Kucha – a social networking event at which UNANZ will be able to communicate its main messages. There is also a goal of visiting the Mangere Refugee centre. SO for UN Renewal Gray Southern reported on a range of activities focusing on sustainable development policies. THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

Branch Reports

Branch reports were received from Northern, Wellington, Canterbury, Wanganui, and UN Youth, and these are included in this newsletter.

Remits

Bequest Invitation brochure. Council considered the wording of a brochure that can be used to invite the donation of bequests for the benefit of UNANZ, and a group was established to complete this project. This consultation raised the issue of ethical sources of income: what sources does UNANZ consider acceptable and which not?

National Council – Section 7 Considerations

The afternoon consultation focused on key tasks of National Council. The President suggested that Council meetings be held over two days rather than one, to ensure that there is sufficient time to consult on all the agenda items. Although the Council “exists” throughout the year, its decision-making power exists when the Council convenes, and for this reason it is best for a maximum number of Council members to be present at meetings. Whilst information may be circulated to Council members between meetings, important decisions should be taken in meetings, rather than by correspondence. The National Council agreed that financial support to assist Branch representatives attend meetings be increased. Should a member or branch not be able to fund the difference after the $1 00 rebate from Nat Office then a basic economy fare is to be paid. Although only Members of National Council may vote at meetings, non-members are welcome to attend. Council allowed Jean-Paul Bizoza to make a special presentation on refugee policy in New Zealand. It agreed to support a letter of concern about the recent agreement between Australia and New Zealand on the processing of “boat people” as part of New Zealand’s refugee program. UNANZ’ “Three year Strategic Plan” was discussed and understood in more detail. The President explained that s strategic plan, as called for in the Constitution, provides a ‘road map’ for the coordination of activities at national and branch level. It is also of assistance when funding applications are made.

Meeting with members of UNA Singapore

While attending a UNDP dialogue on Public Service Delivery in Singapore on March 5th, Graham Hassall had the good fortune of meeting members of the United Nations Association of Singapore. The members, seen in the accompanying photo, expressed their interest in finding mutual projects to undertake with UNANZ. It seems that the branch, whilst operating in a quite different society and economy, shares many of the same issues as we 13

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

face in New Zealand - such as identifying resources and finding new members. At the same time, they were impressive personalities who combined their business talents with a strong desire to make a contribution to their community through the promotion of United Nations values. The website for the United Nations Association of Singapore is www.unas-sg.org

Caption: Graham Hassall meets members of the United Nations Association of Singapore. L to R: Mr. Alexander C. Louis, Graham Hassall, Melissa Yeow-Jony (Treasurer), Prof. Tham Seong Chee (President), Mr. Lee Kwang Boon (Vice-President), William Sim Juay Cheow (Special Projects). Michael G.S. Goh can also be seen in the background at left. Correspondence from our affiliates and partners

UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (www.unescap.org) - March 201 3 newsletter DESA News March 201 3: Youth, Global partnership, Rio+20 Hangout ITU releases latest global technology development figures ITU - Broadband ‘the missing link’ in global access to education Delegation of the European Union to New Zealand newsletter - European Union and New Zealand Government co-host the Pacific Energy Summit 201 3 CTBTO: Russian Fireball Largest Ever Detected by CTBTO’s Infrasound Sensors WFUNA: CSO Outreach: Third High Level Panel (HLP) meeting on the Post 201 5 Development Agenda CTBTO Interview with Frank von Hippel, Professor of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University CID fortnightly newsletter WFUNA: New forthcoming issue of ACRONYM launching soon. THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

CONSTITUTIONAL AND ORGANISATIONAL TIMEFRAMES

Here are the deadlines UNANZ branches and UN Youth, UNANZ national council and national executive need to meet to fulfill the terms of the Constitution for the UNANZ National Conference and AGM 201 3, which is being held in Wellington on 1 8th May. 31 March - Last date for any proposed Constitutional Amendments by members for the AGM to be put forward to and received by National Office. (3 months prior to AGM) 31 March - Last day for Branch AGMs 31 March - Last date for branches, affiliates or corporate members to provide written notice of any remits, business or matters for consideration at the AGM, to national office. 8 April - Any Constitutional amendments that have been received are distributed by the National Office, to National Council, Branches, Corporate and Affiliate Members (within 1 4 days of deadline for receipt). 1 9 April - Last date by which all branches are required to submit Annual Reports and audited Statement of Accounts for the AGM to national office. 1 9 April - Last date for branch remits, AGM matters for consideration, branch annual reports and statement of accounts to be circulated by the national office to all national council members, branches, affiliates, corporate and headquarters members. 1 9 April - Last date for nominations for national council positions for 201 2-1 3 (written and signed on nomination form by proposer, secondary and nominee) to be received by National Office. To be circulated to NC at least two weeks before AGM 1 9 April - Preferred final date for branches to notify National Speech Awards Convener of the details of their branch winner and rep for the national final 3 May - Last date for National Council nominations to be circulated by National Office, to national council, branches, corporate and affiliate members. 1 0 May - Preferred final date for branch member lists and capitation payments to be sent by branches and received in national office. They are constitutionally needed before the AGM to enable voting at AGM. Notification of voting delegates is also requested. 1 7 May - UN Youth/UNANZ National Speech Awards (Afternoon) 1 7 - UNANZ National Conference Panel Sessions (late afternoon) 1 7 MAY - UNANZ National Conference Dinner (evening) 1 8 May - UNANZ Conference 1 9 May - AGM (Morning), National Council Meeting (Afternoon) 14

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

President’s Column

Graham Hassall On February 23rd UNANZ National Council held a very productive meeting, with representatives present from the Northern, Tauranga, Wellington, Canterbury and UN Youth Branches, in addition to our Special Officers for Human Rights, Humanitarian Affairs, and Peace and Security. I opened the meeting with a presentation on the theme “UNANZ – past, present and future” in which I sought to link our fascinating origins with our current challenges and future opportunities. UNANZ has a long history in New Zealand, and it is interesting to consider the exact date of its establishment. I had presumed that UNANZ was established soon after the formation of the United Nations, but I’ve discovered an article in the Auckland Star, from 6 October 1 945 headed “Change of Name”, which indicates that our organization was preceded by the “League of Nations Union of New Zealand”

CHANGE OF NAME

P.A. WELLINGTON, Friday. A proposal that the name of the League of Nations' Union of New Zealand should be changed to the United Nations' Association of New Zealand met with general approval at the Dominion conference of the union to-day. Because of legal technicalities, however, the proposal was referred to the Dominion council to prepare a resolution in conference with the union's honorary legal adviser, Mr. E. P. Hay, for submission to an annual meeting early next year. (Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 237, 6 October 1 945, Page 6) A fuller account appeared in the Evening Post on the same day:

A NEW TITLE? LEAGUE OF NATIONS UNION

The “United Nations Association of New Zealand” the new name suggested for the League of Nations Union, met with the general approval of delegates to the annual conference by the union yesterday, but because of legal technicalities the new name will not be adopted immediately. The proposal was referred to the Dominion council to prepare a resolution, in conference with the union's legal adviser, for submission to the annual meeting to be held in Wellington next February. During a discussion on the proposal the Rev. P. THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

Gladstone Hughes pointed out that the term. "United Nations" at present excluded a number of nations. The chairman, the Rev. Dr. E. N. Merrington, said that the term "United Nations" was used in a connotation which meant that the organisation was open to all peace-loving nations. No nation was excluded, except, in the meantime, enemy nations. All would be eligible for membership when their peace-loving intentions were apparent. (Evening Post, Volume CXL, Issue 84, 6 October 1 945, Page 11 ) A subsequent article appeared in the Auckland Star on 8 December 1 945:

LEAGUE OF NATIONS

An announcement that the name of the organisation would shortly be changed to "United Nations' Association" following the procedure adopted in England, was given at the annual meeting of the League of Nations Union. (Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 291 , 8 December 1 945, Page 7) Clearly, then, we belong to an organization that dates in this country to early in the twentieth century. UNANZ early records are in the Turnbull Library and more recent ones in the national office. But much of the “institutional memory” remains with those individuals and branches who have been active for years and decades. It would be of great benefit to current and future members if these experiences and materials were to be recorded and preserved, perhaps by convening “history of UNANZ” seminars, and inviting our longest-standing members to share their recollections of the origins of each branch. This sense of history affects the efforts we make in the present. For although the potential for the UN and its many organs and programs to assist in establishing peace, prosperity, and justice in the world is great, the extent to which ancillary organizations such as UNANZ can add benefit is affected by our shared vision and ability to work cohesively. UNANZ is a small but well-established and wellrespected member of New Zealand’s civil society. In part this respect has been earned through the commitment its members and the manner in which they continue to engage with the most significant issues of our time, and in part it has been earned through the ideals of the United Nations, which continue as a leading moral force and organizing principle in a deeply troubled and divided world. The potential for the UN and its many organs and programs to assist in establishing peace, prosperity, and justice in the world is great. However, the extent to which any ancillary organization, such as UNANZ, can add benefit, is affected by our human and material resources, our shared vision, and ability to work cohesively. We make plans together in order to derive realistic and achievable goals in agreed directions. 15

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

Branches

In addition to the crucial roles played by the National Council (which meets two or more times per year to set policy directions) and the executive committee (which meets monthly to put policies into action), effectively functioning of branches are at the heart of the success of UNANZ. Most branches have reported successful activities in the past few months, particularly concerning Model UN events, observation of UN Days, and participation in the Speech contest for high school students. We have reached that time of year when branches hold their AGMs and we wish each branch well in having a very successful event at which many of their members attend and participate. The UNANZ newsletter and website benefit greatly when news of Branch activities is shared, and I think that everyone in UNANZ is keen to find ways to improve our methods of communication, both within and externally, to the public and to interested partner organizations.

ISSUE No 1

1 8th. UNANZ AGM will be held on Sunday 1 9th.

President’s activities

Since the last National Council Meeting I have had the opportunity to visit the Tauranga, Canterbury, Wanganui and Wellington Branches, as well as a meeting of UN Youth, and this has helped me to appreciate the depth of capacity that UNANZ possesses across the generations.

Special Officers

I want take this opportunity to thank the Special Officers for the work they have done in the past few months, in several cases assisting in keeping members updated on important issues and on others, bringing important matters to the attention of the public and government officials. We should all think about how the work of the Special Officers can be strengthened and supported, so please feel free to contact them with your suggestions. One of UNANZ key roles is to share information about UN activities with government officials and with the public. In order to do this, UNANZ and its membership must have a good understanding of the structure of UN system, as well as of its operation. Since the UN is such a large organization with so many activities underway simultaneously, we can only expect to monitor certain aspects of them. We need to decide which UN organs and programs to follow most closely, and how to achieve this. We don’t have paid researchers or interns, but we do have some Special Officers as well as members who have sufficient time for the task. Once we get monitoring in place, we need to determine how best to share this information with interested audiences, whether via the internet, seminars and briefings, or publications.

National Conference and UNANZ Annual General Meeting

The dates for the 201 3 National Conference have been set for 1 7-1 9 May. We look forward to welcoming as many UNANZ members as possible at this stimulating gathering in Wellington. The theme is “New Zealand and Global Security: expanding the agenda for engagement”. The finals of the secondary schools speech context will feature on the afternoon of Friday 1 7th May, and an all day seminar on New Zealand and Global Security, with Colin Keating as one of the keynote speakers will feature on Saturday THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

National President, Graham Hassall with Wanganui Branch members. Photo: G Hassall

December is always a busy month. On 6 December 201 2 I presented a session on the United Nations system to Indonesian students attending an Intercultural leadership camp at Victoria University; on the 9th I spoke at UNANZ Youth’s National Officeholders' Development Conference in Wellington; and on the 1 0th I chaired a Human rights day roundtable organized by Wellington Branch. On December 11 th I attended an event at the New Zealand Parliament sponsored by the European Union Delegation to New Zealand and the European Union Centres Network, to celebratethe European Union’s receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize; and on the 1 2th I participated in an observance of Human Rights Day organized by the Wellington Bahai Community that featured the “Education under Fire” documentary highlighting the denial of a right to education currently suffered by the Bahais of Iran. I commenced the new year by presenting a session on the UN system at a Victoria University Intercultural Leadership Summer Course for students from Peking University (January 31 st) and on Sunday February 1 0th I attended a brunch organized by the Wanganui Branch held at the home of Gita Brooks, and attended by approximately 1 0 branch members. While in Wanganui I visited the remarkable “Hand Span” edifice, initiated by “Peace through unity”. With the National Conference coming up in May, plus the Asia-Pacific Model United Nations Conference (AMUNC) in Wellington in July, in addition to a number of important confererences to monitor internationally, the next quarter year promises to be an absorbing period for us all. 16

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS SEPTEMBER 2012

BRANCH REPORTS

UNANZ has active regional branches in Auckland, Waikato, Tauranga, Whanganui, Wellington and Canterbury.

Northern Branch Michael Shroff

The branch will be hold its AGM at Kinder House on Tuesday March 1 2. All welcome. We are again looking forward to participating at the Auckland International Cultural Festival, which is being held this year in the War Memorial Park, Mt Roskill. The date is 7 April, and once again there is no rain day, so fingers crossed for the weather. We have always enjoyed reasonable weather on past occasions. At our last meeting of 201 2, Antony Vallyon, a longserving member and former National President, who was back in Auckland over the summer, spoke about Universal Periodic Review (UPR). The review process provides a unique opportunity for NGOs, individuals and civil society groups to influence New Zealand’s human rights landscape. The UPR considers New Zealand's human rights performance as a whole; all human rights and the way they interact in the New Zealand environment. We intend to hold meetings on a bi-monthly basis, reflecting our membership numbers, which have been on the decline.

Tauranga Branch Gray Southon

The following lists the events we have held in recent times and our plans for the coming months. Seeds of Hope exhibition with Soka Gakkai Opening 1 8 Oct - Exhibition 1 9 Oct – 1 0 Nov This program was completely different to anything we did before, and was a new experience in working so closely with another organisation. We were the junior partners and much credit goes to the SGI people. The opening was an excellent event, and we were pleased to have the contribution of Graham Hassall. Unfortunately there were significant weaknesses in the publicity for the on-going exhibit, especially for the schools. Attendance was modest. We did, however, have the benefit of working closely with the SGI people. Evening with Graham Hassall 1 8th Oct. We took the opportunity of Graham’s visit to Tauranga to have a dinner meeting after the Exhibition opening. This gave a chance for Graham to meet us and to THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 2

discuss some issues of how the organisation might run. UN Day event 24th Oct. This was a simple shared meal for members, with discussions on sustainability in the light of the exhibit. Hon Simon Bridges meeting 1 6 Nov, and related letters. A delegation of 7, including four youth, met Simon Bridges and heard his perspective on the government’s position on climate change. There are on-going discussion, some of which have been published in the UNANZ newsletter. End of Year evening 28/11 /1 2. Another shared meal, with a modest attendance, but good discussion on how the branch was operating . Tauranga Intermediate Model UN – 28 Nov. This is the second year that the school has run a model UN, which is integrated into their classroom program. The event was chaired by our student executive members, with a new student being trained.

Newsletters and mailing

A short newsletter was prepared and circulated with copies of the national newsletter. UN Forums – have been held: 1 5/9, 29/9, 1 3/1 0, 3/11 , 1 /1 2, 1 2/1 , 26/1 Forums are highly variable in membership and style, but all seem quite successful in their own way. Letter to Greypower: This contribution to the media debate on the UN has been circulated to Council. Membership: There has been some increase in interest coming from the Exhibit, and some have attended the UN Forums. Plans: The following is being planned. Multicultural Festival 1 6th March: We will have a booth. AGM – 25th March: With discussions on how we present the UN, we are looking for outside advice to assist us. Speech Awards planned for 4th April, Tauranga Girls’ College. Senior Model UN: June. A crisis model UN with support from UN Youth, Auckland in the City Council Chambers. Helen Clark presentation: We are hoping to arrange a major presentation in Baycourt, the city’s concert hall, possibly hosted by the Mayor. The provisional title is “Challenges and Achievements in making a better world”. UN Forums will continue with an approximately two weekly basis.

17

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

Wanganui Branch Kate Smith

We held a successful Welcome to the New Year with a Brunch in February. Our guest speaker was National President, Graham Hassall who gave us his ideas for UNANZ in the future. Graham’s message was very well received by all attending and gave us all confidence in the future of UNANZ – we felt the association was in ‘good hands’. The picture to the left shows Graham with a piece of Wangani glass which was presented to him.

Calendar of events for 201 3

Branch AGM: TBC March, at 4 Allison Street Senior MUN-GA: Friday 1 5 March, at Wanganui Girls College Regional Speech Awards: Sunday 24 March, at Christ Church Upper Room, 243 Wicksteed Street. Venue to be confirmed UNANZ Annual Conference: 1 7-1 9 May Mid Winter Brunch: Sunday 1 4 July International Day of Peace: Wednesday 21 st September (programme still to be decided) UN Day Celebration: 24 October - to be confirmed Junior MUN-GA: Friday 1 November, Wanganui Girls College

Wellington Branch Robin Halliday

September 201 2 – February 201 3

Wellington Branch work closely with National on a Wellington programme, sometimes in partnership including sharing costs and sometimes simply promotion through our membership eg UN Day. Since September 201 2 we have held : Sept 21 Roundtable on Responsibility to Protect – UNANZ -held on International Peace Day the evening before the National Council – General report being prepared for Web site. October 24 UN Day reception Premier House – UNANZ - DVD available and on youtube. October 31 Renewable Energy in the Pacific – UNANZ and UNA Wgtn – see attached report THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

ISSUE No 1

This has been sent out to those who attended or contributed and a hard copy with background papers will go the Ministers involved with a request to see McCully. The NZ Government and European Union are hosting a Summit on this in March. December 1 0th Human Rights Day lunch with affiliates – UNANZ – Report nearing completion and will be sent around before National Council. Other meetings members invited to included one with Helen Clark – address available from office where around 25 UNANZ members were present and had the chance to meet her – Disarmament workshop – see attached report and a Red Cross IPPNW Seminar is being held on the Oslo Conference 21 February. The Branch plans to follow this up at our AGM late March – speakers being confirmed

Plans for 201 3

The Committee have met and the AGM will be held in late March The Regional Speech Award is being held on 23 April and the National finals on 1 7 May. It is still proposed that a Hypothetical debate on a topical subject will be held in April and this will encourage the formation of a young professionals group. It is also proposed that we will have a lunchhour series possibly on Water but will link into the call for contributions towards the Sustainable Development goals arising from Rio+20. I am preparing a separate report on this for National Council as it is something branches contribute to through forums on line discussions and affiliates. Membership for 201 2 was increased an we are now in a more financially stable position. I thank my Committee for their work and members for their support. Included in the full report is a report on New Zealand National Consultative Committee on Disarmament's Workshop/Seminar of 28 November 201 2: Update on Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). Full report is available on our website at http://tinyurl.com/WgtnBranchReport

Special Officer Reports Reports are accessible on the website under the named programmes: Peace and Security (Helena McMullin) Humanitarian Affairs (Mikael Gartner) Human Rights (Lachlan Mackay) UN Renewal (Gray Southon) 18

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

ISSUE No 1

UN Youth Presidents Report Anton Smith Trust

Projects completed and upcoming

General operations update

Our national and regional programme volunteers are gearing up for a busy year. We are still trying to get our online competition off the ground with some technical support, and we have just successfully increased our secondary schools’ delegation to The Hague from 1 6 to 22 students. UN Youth was also nominated and selected as a semi-finalist for the Mitre 1 0 Community of the Year Award. While UN Youth did not progress to the final round, it is fantastic recognition for the community spirit of our members. Constitutional review

UN Youth is likely to be going through a lot of internal changes soon. I have spent the summer redrafting UN Youth’s National Constitution. This was the result of an extensive constitutional review last year as part of our Strategic Plan, After our National Council meeting we will further consult with our volunteers and membership. It will include checking the draft clause relating to UN Youth’s relationship to UNANZ with Graham Hassall, UNational President. UN Youth cannot amend this clause at an AGM or a SGM without his prior written approval. I do not foresee there being any substantial amendments to that clause other than adding reference to WFUNA. Our goals for constitutional reform include: improving decisionmaking processes, enhancing and clarifying volunteer responsibilities and duties, clarifying the relationship between the national organisation and its regional branches and tidying up the incremental changes made over the years that have made the National Constitution so messy. We will also be establishing another document linked to the National Constitution entitled “the Protocols” that our National Council can swiftly and regularly update to deal with operational changes – the aim being to ensure that our National Constitution will not need substantive change for some years, giving our stakeholders and members across the country greater certainty. Online competition

There has been a disappointing lack of interest in getting involved in this project. However, Andrew Chen has continued to work to get this up and running and he has made a research proposal to the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Auckland to see if the webpage and components could be created as part of a senior student project. If successful, this proposal will give us the basic online resources that we need to start the competition. However, we will need people to run the competition and this will require us to work harder on convincing our members that this is one of the best suggested innovations we have seen in recent years. I personally believe it is a fantastic way forward for our organisation to improve its accessibility to all rangatahi. THE PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT

FOR THE

UNITED NATIONS

The registration forms for our new charitable trust have been handed in to the Department of Internal Affairs and we are waiting to hear the results of that. Once registered, the trustees will apply for a concession to change the name to “UN Youth New Zealand Charitable Trust” and they will also arrange for a deed of undertaking to be signed transferring the appropriate amount from the UN Youth bank account to the trust fund as determined by UN Youth’s National Council in accordance with our Trust Strategy. UN Youth Australia

It is safe to say we have developed a much stronger relationship with UN Youth Australia over the previous year. Myself and one of our other senior officeholders, Sally Wu, travelled to UN Youth Australia’s December National Council to learn about what our friends across the ditch get up to, and how they manage their large pool of volunteers. This has various benefits for us, many of which are already coming to fruition via the constitutional review. We are recommending that we send at least one senior volunteer to that meeting each year. We can expect a visit to April National Council (in Auckland) from their volunteers and potentially even to observe Youth Declaration. Youth rep

A meeting with a senior staff member at MFAT is forthcoming, at long last, to begin to open a dialogue about youth representation at the United Nations General Assembly. I have also received advice via Paddy McCann (UN Youth Australia’s National President) from a DFAT staff member in Australia who used to volunteer for UN Youth Australia and who helped to set up their Youth Rep Programme. I will cautiously continue this dialogue with the support of the UN Youth National Executive and see where it may lead the organisation.

Welfare

We are hoping to improve the way we promote the welfare of our volunteers and members, particularly during our events. We have procured some pro bono legal assistance to help us better understand our responsibilities in the New Zealand jurisdiction for people and organisations working with children and young people. Engagement

We are grateful for Gray Southon’s efforts to engage with us regarding his proposals relating to sustainability and global engagement. At the time of writing, I am preparing to discuss the proposals further with UN Youth’s National Council to gauge any further ideas and to make sure everyone supports the idea of us promoting the sustainability project in particular to our members. 19

UNANZ.ORG.NZ


UNANZ NEWS MARCH 2013

UNANZ PEOPLE

Waikato: Mano Manoharan Tauranga: Gray Southon Wanganui: Kate Smith Wellington: Robin Halliday Canterbury: Mary McGiven

National Council

National President Graham Hassall

National Vice Presidents Mary Davies­Colley, Lachlan Mackay

UN Youth President Anton Smith

Treasurer Robin Halliday

Honorary Life Members

Margaret Knight, Robin Halliday, Dame Laurie Salas, Lady Rhyl Jansen, Grace Hollander, Ivan Densem, Carrick Lewis, Diana Unwin, Clinton Johnson, Gita Brooke, Mary Gray, Colin McGregor, Kate Dewes, Alyn Ware

Affilate Members

National Council Representative Izolda Kazemzadeh

Special Officers

Helena McMullin ­ Peace and Security Lachlan Mackay ­ Human Rights Gray Southon ­ UN Renewal Scott Bickerton ­ SO Model UN Gray Southon ­ WFUNA Liaison Mikael Gartner ­ SO Humanitarian Affairs

Ordinary Members Izolda Kazemzedah, John Morgan Joy Dunsheath, Lucas Davies

Affiliate Representatives Bradley McDonald (Esperanto) Izolda Kazemzadeh (Baha'i)

Branch Presidents

ISSUE No 1

Northern Region: Michael Shroff and Gary Russell

National Council of Women NZ, NZ Assn of Rationalists & Humanists, NZ Council of Trade Unions, Operation Peace Through Unity, Soroptimist International SW Pacific NZ Esperanto Association Inc, UN Women, Baha’i Community, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF), National Consultative Committee on Disarmament (NCCD), Post Primary Teachers Association (PPTA), AFS Intercultural Programmes, UNICEF New Zealand, NZ Educational Institute (NZEI), International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW), Response, The Asia Network, Australia New Zealand Cultural Centre, Oxfam (NZ), Humanist Society, New Zealand Federation of Women's Institutes.

UNANZ Membership

Name: ______________________________________________________ Address: ____________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________ Phone: ___________________Email:______________________________ Region of choice: Membership Fee:  Canterbury  Tauranga Individual/Family - $40  Wellington  Waikato Student/Unwaged - $25  Whanganui  Northern Affiliated Oganisation - $75 Send to: PO Box 24494, WGTN

Donation: $___________

Note: Your personal information will only be used by the UN Association

ABOUT THE UNANZ NEWS

The UNANZ News is the quarterly publication of the United Nations Association of New Zealand UNANZ News welcomes articles, short letters, and images from outside sources. If you would like to submit an item for consideration, please send it to the newsletter editor Pete Cowley office@unanz.org.nz

CONTACT

PO Box 24­494 Wellington Central Wellington 6142 New Zealand (04) 496 9638 office@unanz.org.nz

PATRONS

His Excellency, Lt General The Right Honourable Sir Jerry Mateparae, GNZM, QSO, Govenor­General of N.Z. Rt Hon Helen Clark ­ Administrator UNDP

WE THE PEOPLES FOUNDATION

Trustees: Pamela Jeffries, John Hayes, Russell Marshall To make a donation or bequest to the We The Peoples Foundation for the benefit of UNANZ please contact office@unanz.org.nz Charities Commission Number CC38918 Incorporated Society Number 215914


UNANZ Newsletter - March 2013