Prosperity Party New Zealand

A political party that will do what's right for New Zealand and New Zealanders

ADULT PROTECTION OFFICE (APO)

Background

For several years various groups and organisations have endeavoured to highlight the lack of protections and safeguards for adults who are vulnerable to abuse and neglect due to physical, intellectual, or mental health impairment. Many individuals and Groups have established Trusts and Services, that technically should be administered by government agencies (See Appendix A). And in addition, many families of adults in need of safeguarding, live in constant fear of what will happen to their loved one, after they are no longer able to care for them.

On a national level Geriatricians, Advocates, Social Workers, families, lawyers, and Disability organisational representatives have all tried to lobby government to raise awareness. This has been unsuccessful, primarily due to the fact that the vulnerable population concerned are not able to vote and are often the voiceless and unseen.

Organisations, families, and services who provide supports to these groups of adults (particularly those Adults who have communication and/or cognitive incapacity) go unmonitored and unsupported, and they are therefore open to abuse and neglect. There are no government agencies or services that take reports (or attend to) abuse and neglect of an adult. Australia has the ‘Office of the Public Guardian’ (or similar) in various states which provides guardianship, Trust management, advocacy, and education. New Zealand has nothing to protect, report or monitor the health and wellbeing of vulnerable adults. Therefore, vulnerable adults aged 21 to 65 rely heavily on their families and/or support agencies. And some families who care for adult loved ones have little support, and struggle to navigate a clunky, discriminatory, and inflexible system. Levels of funding can often depend on whether a person fits into a box and/or lives in a particular region of the country.

Legal protections in New Zealand are non-existent, with Domestic violence laws and the ‘Crimes Act’ insufficient to cover those adults who are at extreme risk of abuse and neglect due to mental and/or physical incapacity. This is particularly true of those in receipt of residential services who are without natural supports.

In addition, Families and/or other community members are expected to pay thousands of dollars to apply for guardianship (unless they do it themselves, which is not often easy) to apply for legal guardianship and/or property management.

Organisations and health agencies are expected to apply for Personal Orders to ensure a vulnerable adult without natural supports gets their health and welfare needs met, due to their inability to provide consent for themselves.

There is also a need to monitor those who take up the role of Care and Welfare Guardian, Property Manager, Property Administrator and Enduring Power of Attorney. There is no oversight of those that are in charge of the care and welfare of vulnerable adults, and only minimal oversight of those who manage a person’s finances.

New Zealand lacks statistical information or data to outline the current state of affairs for adults at risk of abuse and neglect. Adults who experience cognitive incapacity are unable to participate in research due to consent issues. And little research or data collection has been done to expose the issues experienced by this population of New Zealanders.

The establishment of an Adult Protection Office will:

1. Provide a reporting agency, and attend to potential (or existing) abuse and/or neglect of an Adult

2. Provide advocacy for families and individuals at potential risk of abuse or harm

3. Provide Guardianship for at risk Adults

4. Provide Property Management/Administration for individuals at risk of financial abuse

5. Provide oversight and support for Guardians, Managers and Administrators

6. Provide education for agencies, families, government agencies and communities around the issues affecting adults at risk and their families

7. Have a Tribunal to support the appointment of Guardians, Administrators, and Managers.

8. Allow the collection of information/data that reflects the issues affecting adults at risk

Definition:

Vulnerable Adult: The term ‘Vulnerable Adults’ refers to those individuals who due to physical, mental or intellectual impairment or disadvantage are open to experiencing, or are at risk of, experiencing harm, abuse or neglect.

Purpose

To provide services that serve to protect, promote and support those adults in need of safeguarding, along with their families and relevant service providers. This includes (but is not exclusive to) those adults who experience:

• An Intellectual disability

• Mental health issues

• A Physical disability

• Been victims of domestic (or other) violence and/or abuse.

Services

• Advocacy

• Education & Abuse prevention

• Guardianship, applications, appointments, monitoring and disputes

• Property Management, applications, appointments, monitoring and disputes

• Enduring Power of attorney, applications, appointments, monitoring and disputes

• Legal support under the ‘Protection of Personal and Property Rights Act 1988’

• Legal support under the ‘Domestic Violence Act 2018’

• Capacity assessments

Setup

Head office 1 national office

Regional office 1 in each of the main regions

Staff Advocates

Guardians

Property Managers/Administrators

Tribunal officials

Assessment clinician

Lawyer

Educators/Trainers

Social Workers

Areas for offices Whangarei, Auckland, Rotorua, Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Dunedin

Costing The transfer of Legal applications from the courts to the Tribunal will reduce the overall cost to taxpayers

There is an opportunity to have some services as a small fee for service, particularly property management and legal services.

Advocacy Role:

• To take receipt of allegations of abuse and/or neglect of an adult

• Provide advocacy for individuals and/or their families in situations which puts them at potential risk of abuse and/or neglect

• To provide information on support services and resources available to those at risk of abuse or neglect and/or their families

• Collect information/data on issues affecting adults at risk of abuse and/or neglect

This part of the service will provide advocacy to individuals and their families of vulnerable adults. Their mandate will primarily focus on those Adults who are without natural supports or are cared for by family. This will not replace the Health and Disability Advocacy Service. They will not take complaints that come under the jurisdiction and involvement of the Health and Disability service. However, there will be a working relationship (and possible crossover) with both services. The APO will take reports of abuse and/or neglect of adults in need of safeguarding, as well as provide referrals and coordinate services.

Social Workers Role:

• To attend to and investigate reports of abuse and/or neglect

• Case management

• To coordinate services

• Provide reports as required

Social workers will be pivotal to the intervention and prevention of alleged Abuse and/or neglect. They will be responsible for investigating allegations, reporting, and coordinating services. Provide advice to government on wider issues affecting adults in need of safeguarding.

Education Role: 

To provide education on:

• Issues affecting Adults that may need safeguarding

• Rights of vulnerable adults

• ‘Protection of Personal and Property Rights Act 1988’ (Guardianship, Property Management/Administration, Trusts, Power of Attorney & Enduring Power of Attorney)

There will be a need to educate providers, families and government agencies around the issues affecting adults at risk, along with the legalities that come with the appointment of a legal representative for an individual. This will also include knowing how to recognise and report abuse and/or neglect for the community in general.

Guardianship Role:

• To appoint a guardian for someone at potential risk, where there are no other such persons to take up the role

• Process applications from individuals & Agencies

• Provide support and oversight of existing Guardians

Families and organisations will approach the Office to either apply or have someone appointed to be a guardian for a person who lacks capacity, or has a total inability to communicate, to ensure their safety, health and welfare needs are met. The application process will be simplified, take less time than that currently taken (3 to 8 months), but also ensure it is in the person’s best interest to have a guardian appointed, and that the person being appointed is the right person.

Property Managers/Administrators Role:

• To have a Manager or Administrator appointed for individuals that need support around their finances and property

• Process applications from individuals wanting to be appointed

• Provide support and oversight to existing Property Managers/Administrators

For individuals who are unable to manage their own money, or are at added risk from financial exploitation or abuse, a Property Manager (if property is over a value of $5000 and an income of over $20,000) or Property Administrator (if property value is under $5000 and an income of under $20,000) is appointed to support them. Applications will also take less time than currently taken by the courts and at less cost to the taxpayer.

Tribunal officials Role: 

To run informal courts and/or Tribunal hearings and make decisions around applications for Guardianship, Managers and Administrators.

The Tribunal would replace the current court system, with Tribunal officials ensuring compliance with ‘The Protection of Personal & Property Rights Act 1988’, ‘United Convention on the rights of Persons with Disabilities’, ‘Human Rights Act 1993’ and other applicable Acts of law. The person who requires a Guardian, Manager or Administrator would still have a legal representative to ensure their interests were fully represented.

Assessments Role: 

To assess a person’s capacity to make decisions under the guidance of any legal requirements.

It is often difficult to establish true capacity of a person, and therefore this needs to be conducted by a someone who has some understanding and expertise.

This can be done internally as well as externally, as there is often a belief that it is best that a clinician carries out the assessment that knows the person well. However, there is also a belief that a general practitioner often does not have the expertise to clarify a person’s ability to make decisions. It may be a matter of both assessments to form evidence to support (or rebuke) an application for a legal appointment.

Lawyer Role:

• To represent the person named in the application as needing a Guardian, Manager or Administrator

• To support individuals to sign up on an ‘Enduring Power of Attorney’

• To provide advice to staff within the APO as required

An onsite lawyer will allow the APO to ensure it complies with all legislative requirements and ensures the vulnerable adult has some protections in place. They may also provide legal support for those who are victims of domestic violence.

Summary

Not only will an ‘Adult Protection Office’ potentially save lives and protect Adults, but it has the ability to save Taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars. A Tribunal will be far more efficient and cost effective for the appointment of Guardians, managers, and administrators.

It is well known by many of those who provide direct support or services for vulnerable adults that abuse, and neglect exists in New Zealand and goes unmonitored and unseen. These adults need (and deserve) protection from the state. Along with this, families of vulnerable adults need to know that there will be protections in place, when they are no longer around.

New Zealand have ignored this population of adults for too long and have therefore allowed them to be routinely exposed to (and experience) abuse and neglect. The statistics outlining the prevalence of abuse against adults is minimal at best. But it is believed that there are thousands of adults living with family and in residential settings who are (or are vulnerable to) being abused, exploited, and/or neglected. We have an obligation to protect these individuals and take seriously the situations many New Zealanders are under, on a daily basis.

Appendix A

TRUSTS & GROUPS

PASAT – Personal Advocacy and Safeguarding Trust

AGST – Adult Guardianship Services Trust

Wellington Welfare Guardianship Trust

Otago Welfare Guardians Trust

Waikato Guardianship Trust

National Safeguarding Alliance (Awaiting confirmation of official name)


ECONOMIC RECOVERY POLICY

Background

Covid 19 and the resulting Lock-down has had an enormous impact on New Zealand’s economy. From a positive note it has provided us with the opportunity to look at recalibrating our economy and fully utilising our innovative, number 8 wire mentality that can take us out of recession into full employment and therefore ensure a robust future proof economy. It has also allowed us to focus more on local suppliers, producers and services.

We strongly believe we must work towards a return to our clean green image to guarantee future economic success, and the long-term wellbeing for our citizens.

Our environment is pivotal to any initiatives we carry out, and globally there is a strong move towards products and services that are environmentally friendly. We have the opportunity to be global environmental leaders and restore our reputation as producers of high-quality goods and services.

Over the last few decades New Zealanders have lost their sense of community, many of us don’t know our neighbours and too many of us do not own our own home, , therefore don’t emotionally, or physically invest in our local communities. It will be our coming together as a nation, as citizens and as human beings that will pull us up from the crisis that was Covid 19 and the resulting lockdown.

New Zealand needs new and innovative thinking that will provide a robust economy which results in the holistic wellbeing of all its citizens. ‘Prosperity Party NZ’ has the policy that will move us into a new way of thinking that incorporates our underlying principles: Preservation, Innovation, Transparency, Accountability and Equality. Which will future proof our economy and ensure the wellbeing and prosperity of all our citizens.

Purpose

To provide a plan that supports the economic recovery for New Zealand and long term solutions to ensure New Zealand’s economic success. Along with this, the policies will support full employment, and create an innovative and diverse economic portfolio, whilst also ensuring our environment is protected and restored to its natural state.

POLICY

Work and Income

Break this into two entities, (Work NZ & Income NZ)

‘Work NZ’ to focus on getting people into work and ‘Income NZ’ to ensure individuals and families are sufficiently supported financially. Every citizen will be supported to and expected to be engaged in paid work, voluntary work, care giving or study/learning. Those who are incapacitated due to illness or disability supported to do as much as they can in a valuing role in society. Every individual to be assessed and supported holistically with wrap around services with the goal of that person being independent of state support.

Immigration

Have levels capped at the rate of new builds

Recent statistics reflect 37,000 new builds and 59,000 net migration. We therefore should only admit those new immigrants who fill an area of need, or for reunification with immediate family.

Office of Innovation and Business

Provide those with business ideas a forum to present their ideas and get support and/or investment

Individuals with new business ideas to be given the opportunity to present to a panel of expert business owners similar to a Dragons den type set up.

In addition, those successful businesses ideas that come out of it provided with interest free loans and support or linked with investors.

Create a business investment website for New Zealanders to look at potential investment opportunities within NZ.

Inventory

Take an inventory on what we currently have in terms of businesses and what we need.

With the closure of many businesses it is a good time to look at the amount of various retail outlets, services etc and see what we need more of, and what we have sufficient businesses to cover demand. This should also reduce those businesses that fail or go into bankruptcy.

Housing

Have a diverse strategic plan to deal with the housing crisis that supports jobs, the economy and local businesses.

This could include utilising those companies that can build sturdy small houses at a realistic cost. The workforce can be gained through ‘Work NZ’. Work in partnership with council to find vacant land, and/or vacant buildings. Utilise individuals who receive sentencing through the justice system to create products to be utilised in the building. Also find ways to include the use of recyclable material in buildings and other infrastructure.

Simplify the Resource management process and allow competition in the issuing of resource consents, whilst ensuring compliance with legislation.

Have a set of building plans sanctioned by government for smaller houses that supports fast tracking for building.

Imports

Put a stop on any items imported that we are (or could) produce ourselves, or items that are of a low quality.

Renegotiate with other countries to ensure we trade items of mutual benefit. Put a stop on any items imported that we are (or could) produce ourselves, or items that are of a low quality.

Set up an open national register, for businesses to list items they currently source from overseas, to give NZ businesses the opportunity to produce or provide them locally.

Research

Undertake research into global demands to analyse and investigate what is in demand or is likely to be in demand going forward.

In an ever-changing world, demand for products that are socially and environmentally responsible is increasing. To sustain a strong economic future, we must stay on top of global demands, whilst also being conscious of protecting and sustaining our environment.

Tourism – All New Zealand Tourism activities to be GST free for New Zealanders.

Environment

‘Prosperity’ would utilise some of those currently out of work to help restore and repair our environment.

Pollution of our streets and our waters is worsening and needs our immediate attention. Clean and green are the key words to our sustainability and to our global reputation as a producer of high-quality produce, and therefore our exports. The world is looking for solutions to a growing demand and a decaying planet. Plastic has become our enemy, along with general waste. We will be supporting innovative ways to deal with general waste that supports sustainability and a clean environment. We would find ways to get a workforce engaged in environmental activities, such as sorting recyclable material. We would also set up comprehensive programmes that would include furniture restoration and repair, IT refurbishment and repair and other activities that promote reuse of material that would otherwise end up in landfill. The programmes would also serve as a training platform and skill development.

NZ made campaign

Get serious about promoting New Zealand made products and services.

Strong marketing and publicity to highlight the benefits of buying NZ made. Five star system on products. Five stars equals 100% of the cost of the item staying in NZ, 4 stars equals 80% etc.

Tax

Investigate a simplified tax system to be broader based and seamless.

Establish a task force to look into creating a tax system that captures revenue currently missed and supports national economic growth, individual prosperity and less administrative paperwork for businesses. Look at the viability of a transactional tax.

Property sales/Overseas investors

No property sales to overseas entities or individuals.

Purchasing and investment for businesses to only take place if of direct benefit to New Zealanders, and only after New Zealand investors are approached.

Night classes

Bring back community night classes

Night community classes enable people to engage with their communities, learn new skills and increase self-sufficiency. Classes such as: car repair/Mechanics, cooking, budgeting, business administration, parenting etc.

Community Hubs

Create community Hubs that contain various government and not for profit services to provide wrap around services and holistic support and information.

This would include (but is not limited) to Work NZ, Income NZ, Public Trust, Counselling services, Citizens advice, Library, Budgeting services, ACC, Adult Protection Office, Local council, Oranga Tamariki etc.

ACC

Overhaul the ACC system

Adapt the system to better fulfil its purpose and ensure it is fair to those in need of support at time of illness and/or injury. The system must reflect a need to support those who experience injury, disability and/or illness through no fault of their own, such as cancer & disabilities at birth. In addition, reduced support for those, where there is evidence to show the individual has some responsibility, culpability and accountability for their injury, illness or disability through their proven neglect of law or policy.

Summary

Prosperity Party NZ believes the only way forward is to be more innovative and holistic in our thinking. We have a lot to protect, build and restore, to ensure our ongoing economic success, as well as guaranteeing the wellbeing and prosperity of its citizens. The key will be our coming together as a nation and recognising we all have the capability to contribute to and benefit from our communities. We have to start taking a more person centred and holistic and long-term approach to people who require support from the state. Support from the state should only be such that it provides services and supports that enable individuals be as independent as possible. We believe that every citizen is of equal value regardless of age, sex, ethnicity or disability. We also need to truly honour the Treaty and develop non-tokenistic services from both Maori and European perspectives. Our uniqueness comes from our diversity, and bi-cultural beginnings. ‘Prosperity’ believes we are a nation that is multi-ethnic and bi-cultural. We believe we should have parallel social systems (Maori and European based) that are run in a culturally appropriately way, and accessible to all.

Discrimination and separatism will continue to damage our social fabric and we must take a more human rights approach to all we do as a nation. We need to come together as New Zealanders and invest in our people. Systems and services have to promote personal responsibility and maximise every New Zealander to be a productive, healthy, and prosperous member of society. Keeping in mind that ‘prosperity’ means different things for different people.

Zero tolerance for abuse, neglect and discrimination on any grounds.


CHILD PROTECTION POLICY

Background

New Zealand has always had unacceptable levels of child abuse, and for too long this population of people have been neglected by government administrations. Too many children live in fear, are abused, and/or neglected or even killed by those that should protect them the most. Child abuse and neglect is caused by a range of factors, but can affect children from all ethnicities, backgrounds, and incomes. ‘Prosperity Party NZ’ sees every child as deserving of a life free of neglect, abuse, and harm. We will not support any policy that provides greater or lesser support based on race, ethnic background or income. Every child deserves societies protection.

Purpose

To eliminate child abuse and neglect in New Zealand

Statistics In 2019:

• 6302 children were victims of violent offences (24% higher than in 2014)

• Children that were victims of serious assault had grown by 40% over passed 4 years

• 1 child died every 5 weeks (two thirds were under 2 years old)

• There were 6447 children in state care

• There were 41,000 reports of child abuse

• NZ had the highest rate of teen suicide in the OECD

• NZ had the 7th Highest rate of Child homicide in OECD

Zero tolerance campaign

‘Prosperity Party NZ’ would Implement a strong campaign that clearly depicts a zero tolerance for abuse and neglect, with an emphasis on reporting, recognising and rescuing children.

New Zealand has shocking statistics when to comes to child abuse. The issues facing the day to day lives of children in New Zealand, very rarely makes the news these days. The media have stopped reporting on it, unless it’s another horrific death when it may or may not make the front page. There are a host of contributing factors, and no new initiatives that positively impact on the lives of our children. New Zealanders need to see the face of abuse and neglect and understand that we all must work together to improve the lives of young New Zealanders, not only to protect lives, but to break the cycle. Today’s child is tomorrows adult and we need to take responsibility for protecting the vulnerable members of our society.

Oranga Tamariki

Undertake a complete and thorough independent review on systems, inner workings, practices, and resources within the service.

There have been many reviews of ‘Oranga Tamariki’ but generally the focus has been on elements of the service or a specific handling of a case. They are the key agency for getting it right for children. Their actions must include a range of interventions that enable a holistic response which works for that child. ‘Prosperity Party’ would also support the establishment of two forms of intervention services which includes a service that supports a Kaupapa Maori approach. Not a tokenistic service, but one that enables a culturally appropriate approach to the protection of children, but is open to any child, regardless of ethnicity. Taking children off their family is a last resort, but must be undertaken if there are concerns around safety, at least in the immediate term. Priority must be given to extended family engagement as opposed to being placed in the care of strangers.

Plunket

Ensure all children receive care, monitoring and support from Plunket from aged 0 to 2 years. Ongoing care, support and monitoring for children deemed at risk, through to adolescence.

Not everyone has the tools to be an effective parent, nor do they always have natural supports in place to help with parenting. Some parents require a higher level of support, or greater intervention to ensure the wellbeing of both parent and child. We need to ensure we monitor the lives of children and support new parents to give children the best start in life. ‘Plunket’ should not have to fight for funding or provide support on a shoe string. Children have to be a high priority to enable them to have the best possible chance of becoming happy, secure, and productive adults.

Safe houses

Have fully screened safe houses in communities that enable children a place to go when at risk of harm.

Prosperity would establish a place for children to go when they feel at risk or want to report issues for them and/or others. A place of sanctuary that provides immediate safety, and in cases of concern a Social Worker allocated to investigate and intervene if required.

Respite Houses

Homes for children to be placed at times of immediate danger or risk

Often when a situation occurs there is a lack of places children can be placed to give them immediate safety for a few days until a long-term plan can be put together. This may mean safety from a parent or family member, or safety due to their own behaviours of their own that put them at risk. These would be houses that are fit for purpose and open for 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Secure and staffed by qualified professionals who are trained to deal with children at risk. Whilst inhouse, this would give time to analyse and put together a comprehensive plan around next steps.

Holistic wrap around care

Families that come to the attention of ‘Oranga Tamariki’ to be provided with holistic ongoing support.

Utilising and coordinating existing services and creating new services. These include (but are not exclusive to) Budgeting, mentoring, counselling, Life coaching, parenting, life skills, career support etc. Each family to be assessed with a comprehensive plan to support success, as well as ensuring they have access to all financial supports available to them.

Parenting Training centres

For those families that require (and could benefit from) parenting classes.

Regional parenting centres with a comprehensive programme of classes that help parents cope with parenting. Some examples might include parenting children with disabilities, drugs and alcohol, shared-parenting, step parenting etc. Where required a parent can be matched with a mentor/support person to help with ongoing advice and support.

Kaupapa Maori services

The creation and support of Maori culturally appropriate services.

‘Prosperity Party’ supports having Kaupapa Maori services that run parallel with other established services. We feel that Maori services are often tokenistic and, as Maori are often over represented in some areas, and we must honour the intent of the ‘Treaty of Waitangi’, we feel it appropriate to fully fund and support culturally appropriate services that support the health and wellbeing of New Zealanders. We would utilise and fully fund marae-based initiatives (in consultation with, and the leadership of, local Iwi). Both services to be open to anyone regardless of ethnicity or race.

Counselling services

Fully trained counsellors to provide support for individuals and families

Specialist counselling services that will help children and adults deal with abuse and or neglect and/or support the recovery process, or to prevent recidivism. Counsellors to be specialised in particular areas, such as violence prevention, trauma etc.

Education in schools

Information provided to children around how to get help, recognising abuse and neglect and what supports they can access

It is imperative that children learn to recognise abuse and neglect, as often what can be seen as normal, is not. Knowing where to go, what help is available and what abuse looks like will help children understand how to protect themselves and others.

We must be seen as a nation that looks after its citizens, environment, and animals.

Summary

For far too long the health, welfare and lives of New Zealand children have been a low priority. Resourcing and services fail to protect our most vulnerable citizens and our statistics are proof of this. Every child and family have a unique set of circumstances and to maximise the safety of the children there must be a holistic and sometimes complex response. They need serious social and fiscal investment in their early years to ensure success in their future. We need to break the cycle of abuse and build up our children to be strong productive and healthy adults. This is an area where it is imperative, we provide substantial investment, so todays victim doesn’t become tomorrow’s perpetrator.

We live in a bi-cultural society that should support bi-cultural responses but are not discriminatory in nature.

Every child is precious regardless of their ethnicity, disability, or nationality.


ANIMAL PROTECTION POLICY

Background

There is strong research to suggest that animal abuse has a close relationship with the abuse of people. We must ensure that we are a country that is seen as a global leader when it comes to how we treat animals, recognising many species provide sustenance, companionship, services and/or revenue, enriching the lives of New Zealanders. There is strong research that shows that animal abuse often leads to, or is associated with the abuse of people and therefore we must send a strong message of total unacceptability of abuse in all shapes and forms.

Purpose

To substantially reduce animal abuse, death and neglect in New Zealand Statistics, in the past year

• Approximately 60 million animals were commercially farmed

• The SPCA dealt with over 40,000 reports of abuse and/or neglect of animals

• They carried out over 15,000 investigations

• 144 charges resulted from those investigations

• 28 billion dollars is annually made from animal products

POLICIES

Zero tolerance campaign

‘Prosperity Party NZ’ would Implement a strong campaign that clearly depicts a zero tolerance for abuse and neglect of any animal.

We need to be clear on who we are as a nation, and that is one of compassion and consideration for each other and living creatures. Animal abuse occurs in this country at alarming rates and we need to expose it, eliminate it and implement protections. We would carry out a strong campaign with a strong message that supports the eradication of abuse and neglect of animals.

Commissioner for animals

Create a commission devoted to the health and wellbeing of all animals in New Zealand.

Appoint a commissioner who is responsible for oversight of national animal handling practices and general animal care and welfare. Provide advice to government on how to implement, amend and enforce legislation.

SPCA

Fully fund the SPCA and support them to have a strong working relationship with ‘MPI’, the Animal Commission, Local Councils and ‘Oranga Tamariki’.

SPCA to work with local councils and MPI (Ministry of Primary Industries) to ensure they are adequately supported to regulate, monitor and attend to any maltreatment of animals. The SPCA do an amazing job and should not have to fight for funding. ‘Prosperity Party NZ’ would supply them with sufficient funding to allow them to effectively do the work they do. This would be far more practical than creating an entire new government entity. They need to be able to investigate, prosecute, rehome, treat and report on all abuse and neglect of animals in New Zealand. They are pivotal to the work needed to eradicate abuse and neglect of animals and will need to work with MPI to achieve greater outcomes. They also need to work with ‘Oranga Tamariki’ to report children at a house who may be witness to, or vulnerable themselves to abuse and neglect. And where a child is known to be the abuser, this too is reported to ‘Oranga Tamariki’ so the child receives early intervention and support to encourage their growth into empathic and well adjusted adults.

The SPCA, MPI and council will have the overriding right to order individuals or groups to cease operations, if operating in a manner which is detrimental to the welfare of any breed of livestock or domestic animal

Research

Eradicate all forms of torture and abuse of animals that is done in the name of research.

Prosperity Party NZ will not support any research that involves the torture of, abuse and/or neglect of animals in any form. This includes the ‘Forced swim test’ and other such practices that creates distress and/or physical or psychological harm.

Animal exports

Stop all exports of live animals in large herds or groups

‘Prosperity Party NZ will not support live exports of large herds or groups of animals where it is clearly shown that it is not in the long-term national interests to do so. And in cases where exporting is of benefit, then to ensure the animals are transported humanely with minimal risk and discomfort.

Legal Protections

Create robust legislative protections with effective monitoring practices in place

New Zealand needs stronger legislative protections in place. Along with this there needs to be the resourcing in place to monitor and attend to bad animal handling practices.

Legislation would include restrictions around breeding, ownership requirements, penalties, and monitoring by officials etc

Breeding

Only registered breeders to be legally permitted to breed animals

Every animal (where applicable) must be neutered, unless held by a registered breeder. We would put legal protections in place to stop the breeding of any animals by persons other than registered breeders

Included in that legislation would be the requirement for breeders to be registered and suitably qualified. And for the legislation to be implemented and overseen by MPI, SPCA and the council. The purpose being, to minimise the abuse of animals, as well as the surplus of animals that often results in animals being euthanized

Animal ownership

Ensure anyone who is in charge of or owns an animal has adequate knowledge, expertise and resources to fully care for that animal

In New Zealand anyone can purchase or take possession of an animal regardless of their ability to care for it. Ignorance is no excuse for animal neglect and/or abuse. Prior to the purchase or requisition of an animal individuals must show evidence of understanding the level of care required and that they have the resources to care for it. And for specific breeds eg: cats and dogs, they must be neutered prior to purchase or plans in place to show they will be getting neutered, if too young at time of sale or exchange. All animals to be microchipped and registered. Keep registration costs low, so those on low incomes can still benefit from animal ownership

Education in schools

Support the learning in schools to include basic information on animal care, health, and safety.

Reducing abuse and neglect of animals begins early in life where a child learns empathy and caring for others. Animals play an important role in our society at so many levels, we therefore need to ensure people understand how they must be treated. We also need to support the safety of children around animals and an understanding around their care. Clear messages must include abuse and /or neglect of an animal is unacceptable and must be reported.

State health care

Look at having a state funded animal health care provider

We would support looking into having government funded facilities to provide emergency care for animals where the cost is outside the ability of a person and to provide low cost de-sexing.

Summary

‘Prosperity Party NZ’ will commit to ensure New Zealand becomes a global leader when it comes to animal welfare. This would enhance our reputation as a caring nation, increase the value of our products and overall benefit our economy. Health and wellbeing should not be limited to people, particularly when animals are protecting our borders, partnering with disabled people to increase their quality of life, even contributing to our health through research and companionship.

‘Prosperity NZ’ will ensure harsher penalties and accountability where neglect or abuse occurs, whilst working closely with, and adequately resourcing SPCA, MPI and councils


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