“Chief Human Rights Commissioner Paul Hunt’s comments this morning about white supremacy and co-governance show he is unfit for office and reinforce the need to abolish the left-wing Human Rights Commission”, says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“Hunt’s claim that ‘white supremacy and institutional racism [are] woven into the fabric’ of New Zealand is untrue, needlessly divisive, and does more harm than good.

“Hunt also appears to believe co-governance is a human right promised by the Treaty. Article Three of the Treaty promises equal rights and duties.

“The Commission is a hard-left organisation masquerading as a government department.

“It has been undermining free speech, cuddling criminals, demanding more redistribution, and pushing divisive co-governance.

“It’s time to shut it down.

“The Commission’s highly political manifesto in 2020 called for a new hate speech law, a living wage, raising benefits by 47 percent, “fair pay” agreements, more government departments, two new human rights commissioners, and another public holiday, among a raft of other policies.

“It is no longer interested in helping real people with actual human rights issues, but simply advancing a left-wing agenda.

“When electorate MPs go to the Commission and ask it to help with constituents, it runs for the hills.

“ACT would keep the Human Rights Review Tribunal and beef it up. The HRRT is charged with helping people on a case-by-case basis when their actual rights are practically affected, not pontificating about what other people’s rights should be. In my experience as a local MP, the HRRT has been underfunded.

“If the Paul Hunts of the world want to be in politics, they should try to getting elected. I’d love to see him try. In the meantime, the Human Rights Commission needs to go, replaced by a beefed up Human Rights Review Tribunal to help actual people affected by rights violations.

“Whenever there’s a political issue, the Commission is eager to insert itself into the debate. The previous Human Rights Commissioner, Susan Devoy, waded into public debates that were completely outside her role. Paula Tesoriero, the former Disability Rights Commissioner, conducted herself on the End of Life Choice Act in the most unprofessional way.

“The Commission has become irrelevant and even dangerous. It has become a highly-politicised, left-wing organisation, and when it comes to actually helping people with human rights, it doesn’t help at all.

“ACT sees no purpose for it and would abolish it completely.”

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David Seymour