Polity by Rob Salmond

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Polity: Refugees and aid - we’re laggards

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  • chris,

    Just as long as they’re not Chinese who are able to afford a house.

    They decided to leave Xinjiang, he said, because they were tired of being harassed by Chinese authorities, who, he contended, targeted him simply because he was Muslim. “We need to live like humans, not like animals,” said Mohammed, 32, adding he was jailed for a month without reason and beaten. “I am a Muslim and I love the Koran. Let me live in freedom.”

    He sold his business and his house and paid smugglers a total of about $37,000 to leave China.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report Reply

  • TracyMac,

    Yeah, when we don't even get halfway to Australia's pitiful standards, we need to look at ourselves. Although the Coalition in Australia is outdoing itself to try and exclude Muslims from their so-humanitarian effort to re-slice their existing quota to include more Syrians.

    In NZ, we're happy to think of ourselves as "compassionate" - look at all the cash raised for The Herald/World Vision campaign (and fair enough, to help the people on the ground right now) - but when it comes to actually opening the nation's doors, it's a different story.

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 701 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    'Flaggards'?

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7948 posts Report Reply

  • bob daktari,

    Our attitude to taking in refugees mimic our attitude to those struggling in NZ... we have become the couldn't care less country or at least thats how it seems - yet so many of us do care and do want our govt to help more

    We need to stop feeding ourselves on stories of how great we think we are and start looking at the cold harsh reality that we're neither small nor poor... we're a average nation performing in a below average manner, we need to change... now who will stage the intervention needed?

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 540 posts Report Reply

  • Daman Saini,

    I believe that Yes, New Zealand is a smaller country and shouldn’t be forced or have to take in more people than already allocated. But we are still making the effort to provide shelter to refugees. Yes, maybe our government can do a lot better, and are somewhat lazy and don’t really care, which can be due to as you said, that people are disinterested in other countries and their problems. But my point is not about the government, my point is about the refugees, and what are the problems associated with them. I think Winston Peters made a pretty good point where he suggested only taking in woman and children refugees from Syria, and telling the men to return home and fight. I too believe that New Zealand can do a lot better, but as Winston Peters had previously stated that we’ve got mass immigration, so let’s just give shelter to woman and children and tell men to go back and fight for their country and freedom. For me personally, only problems the men will face is that they will be sent back to a highly dangerous place, which could potentially end up in a lot of deaths. Moreover, these men are not military trained, they don’t know the fundamentals of war and fighting, they’re normal family orientated men. Another problem with letting refugees in New Zealand, who have no legitimate form of identification, could end up being a potential threat or something similar, for New Zealand. On the other hand, even if we send the men back to fight, there are nearly 1000 rebel groups and who will those men fight for? There are a lot of threats when we talk about sending them back, but they need to fight for their country, like other countries have.

    Since Sep 2015 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Shannon C,

    I don’t agree that New Zealand is “mean spirited” and lazy about helping the worlds vulnerable. NZ is a very charitable country. But what about NZ’s own vulnerable? NZ has issues close to home to deal with. 60,000 kiwi children are living in poverty. We are a first world country with alarmingly high poverty rates. You can rant and rave all you like about the refugee problem calling NZ’s quota “pathetic“ but what about the children going to school in winter with no shoes or jackets. The same children wondering where there next meal is coming from. Don’t you think that it is pathetic that we are arguing to put non New Zealand citizens before NZ citizens, and children none the less?

    While I do agree that NZ should accept more refugees, the issue is that most don’t have any documentation or identification. How do we know if they are legitimate refugees? Consideration that this could pose a threat is essential. NZ needs to be smart about this issue, the crisis in Syria is awful and they do need help but as a small country struggling with unemployment, domestic abuse and child poverty we need to address these issues. I’m not trying to attack you I just think that NZ needs to be careful and smart about this.

    Auckland • Since Sep 2015 • 3 posts Report Reply

  • linger, in reply to Shannon C,

    Don’t you think that it is pathetic that we are arguing to put non New Zealand citizens before NZ citizens

    No, I think it is pathetic that we are not doing anywhere near enough to help either group, instead preferring to waste time arguing that one group is somehow more deserving than another.

    This is not a matter of funding. It is a matter of our shameful government deciding to prioritise corporate welfare over looking after ordinary people.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1935 posts Report Reply

  • Daman Saini, in reply to linger,

    .

    Since Sep 2015 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Shannon C, in reply to linger,

    I think you have taken my post completely out of context. I’m not talking about funding. I’m talking about making logical and smart decisions. Why should we be called pathetic for not putting these refugees before the issues that concern our own citizens, particularly those concerning children.

    Auckland • Since Sep 2015 • 3 posts Report Reply

  • Daman Saini,

    I'l be very interested in what others have to say about a potential terrorist threat?

    Since Sep 2015 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Daman Saini,

    I'l be very interested in what others have to say about a potential terrorist threat?

    What potential "Terrorist" threat? The one possibly engendered by our pathetic Prime Minister by sending a token force to Iraq, with 160 nannies?, the one that may result from the perceived hatred of all things Muslim in our "Smaller" country?. Or do you know something you are not telling us?.

    I believe that Yes, New Zealand is a smaller country and shouldn’t be forced or have to take in more people than already allocated.

    Our country is similar in size to the UK, with a population of around 80 million they manage to take far more Refugees.
    Perhaps the small thing here is more to do with small mindedness and small thinking.
    It's not like we don't have room.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Daman Saini, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    I think you over complicated my comment about a potential threat, what I meant was that people who do not possess legitimate documents to verify who they really are, or if they are associated with terrorist groups. New Zealand is a peaceful country, and the last thing we need is a potential threat, which can be diffused if proper documents are provided.

    I am not targeting the refugees, and calling them a terrorist, my main concern is their paperwork.

    On the other hand however, we don't have room, we have an immigration issue.
    Where are these people going to work, live. Are they going to go on a benefit? There are too many people already abusing it. We don't have room. Where are the statistics which show we have room?

    Since Sep 2015 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Daman Saini,

    MMM Steve agrees?

    Since Sep 2015 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    Our country is similar in size to the UK, with a population of around 80 million they manage to take far more Refugees.
    Perhaps the small thing here is more to do with small mindedness and small thinking.
    It’s not like we don’t have room.

    This site is pretty cool. etc

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Daman Saini,

    my main concern is their paperwork.

    Oh good, glad to know you are concerned.

    Where are the statistics which show we have room?

    Hang on...
    Here ya go...

    New Zealand
    Population
    - June 2015 estimate 4,596,700[6] (123rd)
    - 2013 census 4,242,048
    - Density 16.8/km2 (205th)
    43.6/sq mi
    Here

    United Kingdom

    Population
    - 2014 estimate 64,511,000[4] (22nd)
    - 2011 census 63,181,775[5] (22nd)
    - Density 255.6/km2 (51st)
    661.9/sq mi
    Here

    So, not around 80 million but not far off.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to chris,

    This is pretty cool.

    Nice, apart from the murdered bit, I thought we were better than that but then.... maybe not.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    But then...

    Eighty percent of the world's refugees are hosted in developing countries, which the agency described as a "deep imbalance in international support."

    Pakistan hosts the most refugees with 1.7 million. The second and third leading countries to host refugees at the end of 2011 were Iran and Syria.

    But wait, there's more...

    Main destinations for new aslyum seekers

    1. South Africa (107,000 claims) -- half from Zimbabwe
    2. United States of America (76,000)
    3. France (52,100)
    4. Germany (45,700)
    5. Italy (30,300)

    Major refugee-hosting countries

    1.Pakistan (1.7 million people)
    2.Iran (887,000)
    3.Syria (755,400)
    4.Germany (571,000)
    5.Kenya (566,500)

    Major source countries of refugees

    1.Afghanistan (2.7 million people)
    2.Iraq (1.4 million)
    3.Somalia (1.1 million)
    4.Sudan (500,000)
    5.Democratic Republic of the Congo (491,500)

    Continents where asylum seekers originated from

    1.Asia (45%)
    2.Africa (27%)
    3.Europe (15%)
    4.Americas (8%)

    We don't rate, not at all...

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Brown,

    Govt policy and every almost move they make/don't make, reflect their internal polling. You know,focus groups. Quant and qual research. The political bloc that counts ( that wonderful home-owning, government-defining middle-NZ) would seem to be a smug, self-interested bunch living on the remembered grand social bravery of some quite time ago. We're not as amazing as we like to think we are.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2013 • 137 posts Report Reply

  • Daman Saini, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    Nice to see you keep up with research, but my question remains unanswered. Where will they work? and live?
    When language becomes a barrier, things can go downhill. But we need to understand that the refugees are in a state of shock, which requires immense care.
    There are many opportunities for skilled migrants especially in Auckland but as I mentioned before, communication will be a barrier.




    Its nice to see that ” The refugees will first be screened by the UN refugee agency, the UNHCR. However they must also meet Immigration NZ’s requirements and undergo security and health checks”.

    The Security Intelligence Service also does security checks on those selected.

    A spokeswoman for Mr Woodhouse said that was to ensure they were not a security risk of ‘character of concern’ before they are allowed in”
    We can now rule out that the government will ensure that New Zealand is not under any potential threats.



    Key mentioned that each refugee costs more then 80,000 in health, housing, education, immigration and social development. There are also claims that eighty thousand dollars can also buy life-changing surgery for more then 170 women in the Third World. So how should we look at this? Do you think our government has been doing the right things so far, where does New Zealand’s economy fit in, when talking about migrant jobs? is there any increase in the job market?, which the refugees can take advantage of?

    Since Sep 2015 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle, in reply to Daman Saini,

    Are they going to go on a benefit? There are too many people already abusing it.

    I can see you're the compassionate type.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford, in reply to Daman Saini,

    Key mentioned that each refugee costs more then 80,000 in health, housing, education, immigration and social development. There are also claims that eighty thousand dollars can also buy life-changing surgery for more then 170 women in the Third World. So how should we look at this?

    I don’t think that is something to look at at all.

    But we need to understand that the refugees are in a state of shock, which requires immense care.

    Which is a more grounded conversation piece, but still has some technical issues. I need to understand if the sentence means refugees are in a state of shock when they arrive in New Zealand, or when they fled there homes.

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4442 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Daman Saini,

    A spokeswoman for Mr Woodhouse said that was to ensure they were not a security risk of ‘character of concern’ before they are allowed in”
    We can now rule out that the government will ensure that New Zealand is not under any potential threats.

    Oh, c'mon it's Woodhouse you are talking about here . Actually it's National you're talking about. They don't know how to process there own backside. We are lucky though we have always had a great screening process. They got plenty of time for not too many so we will be ok, Don't Panic. We have interpreters here and English Teachers from all walks of life. The language barriers can be addressed if it's a priority. For now, I think these people need safety.
    Whatever the cost of re homing these refugees, it's an international responsibility for bombing the affected. Johnny boy was happy to send our troops off to join international forces in Iraq. Now we reap what we sow. All War is expensive. Re homing people should be mandatory. Are we not supposed to care about our fellow human beings? Let's get over the cost, and get back to finding War repulsive.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Young,

    This is a brief summary of an article I've just posted on my Gaynz.Com blog, assembled from the Ministry of Immigration's website: http://www.gaynz.com/blogs/redqueen/?p=9935

    n the interests of clarity and public transparency, I have decided to provide a brief description of current New Zealand refugee policy.

    Refugee policy is contained within the Immigration Act 2009, and administered by the New Zealand Ministry of Immigration. The Immigration Act 2009 contains clauses giving legislative effect to New Zealand accession to international human rights treaties such as the United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees 1951, Convention Against Torture and Other Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishnment, the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights and many other such international human rights and civil liberties instruments.

    When assessing refugee claims, the Immigration and Protection Tribunal will refer to Country of Origin Information resources for background context and circumstances related to the grounding of specific claims. For example, Syria’s COI section on the Ministry website includes information from the US CIA and State Department, International Crisis Group, Minority Rights Group, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International. This is a detailed and robust set of sources and shows praiseworthy diligence in its preparation and design.

    The most recent data shows almost gender parity and particular age cohort concentrations between 18-60 and 5-12, indicating family unification and resettlement. Most refugees settle in Auckland, Wellington, Waikato, Manawatu and Nelson.

    As to nations of origin, these tend to consist of areas of international organised crime, lawlessness, failed states and tyrannical regimes, as well as countries caught in the ordeal of civil war. It will probably come as no surprise to learn that Myanmar, Columbia, Sudan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Sri Lanka appear prominently on the list of countries of origin. Proximity appears to play a role in this, given the number of refugees from Columbia and its murderous international drug cartels or Myanmar and its repressive domestic regime, who might find transit to New Zealand more accessible than other countries. So does New Zealand’s involvement in last decade’s Afghan War.

    Are there any aspects of the Immigration Act 2009 that we should be concerned about? Certainly, archival evidence suggests that the Immigration and Protection Tribunal is a transparent and accountable government agency engaged in best practice refugee and asylum assessment. However, some issues are of concern- such as the use of classified information in this context, although again, the Immigration Act 2009 specifically forbids the abuse of classified information for use in deportation, refugee or asylum decisions. Refugees may also be denied entry to New Zealand for other reasons- favourable regime change in countries of origin, as well as deliberate fraud and forgery, criminal activity or terrorism may be legitimate grounds. It does strike me as possible that there may be some legitimate deception involved in escaping specific repressive regimes if they have deplorable records insofar as police brutality, security agency repression and government corruption go.

    How does all this affect LGBT rights?

    Source: http://www.immigration.govt.nz

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 573 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Daman Saini,

    Where are these people going to work, live.

    Most of these people are highly educated, by New Zealand standards and as such will probably create not only their own opportunities but opportunities for others. As to where they will live, I would like to think the authorities will allow them to live wherever they want to, unfortunately the Refugee Settlement Authority only allows them to settle in the 4 main centres, Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin presumably.

    Are they going to go on a benefit?

    At first they will receive assistance, not the "benefit" as you call it.

    There are too many people already abusing it.

    Now it is your turn to do some research, you will find your statement is far from the truth but a widely held belief among National voters.
    Welcome to PAS, we will have you voting for the good of New Zealand and getting rid of these corrupt and greedy sods in no time.
    ;-)

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    Just picked up on this..

    We can now rule out that the government will ensure that New Zealand is not under any potential threats.

    So the Govt. will not ensure that we are not under any potential threats.
    or The Govt. will ensure we are under any potential threats.
    Sound like National, isn't that why they sent troops to Iraq?.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

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