Amicus Curiae: Mythbusting the Unlicensed Maori Driver Controversy

Elizabeth Murray, Leading Contributor Since yesterday there has been a chaotic stream of media commentary and public outrage on the directive issued by Counties Manukau District Police instructing officers in that district to give traffic compliance to unlicensed Maori drivers instead of immediately giving them a fine. Instead of stimulating discussion of the relative success of such directives in promoting …

Amicus Curiae: The Elephant in the Debating Chamber – Debating Euthanasia After ‘Seales’

Eugenia Woo, Leading Contributor In the aftermath of the highly-publicised Seales v Attorney-General case, there has undoubtedly been a renewal of the discussion around end of life choices and their place in New Zealand’s future. Justice Collins’ decision to not grant Lecretia Seales’ application for declarations stating that her physician was able to assist her in ending her life has reignited the debate around euthanasia, and a New Zealand …

Amicus Curiae: Equal Access to Medicine and the TPPA – A Follow-Up

Last Thursday, WikiLeaks released more of the negotiating text of the Transpacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The section released dealt with proposals to harmonise the regulatory regimes for pharmaceuticals between member states, the details of which have aggravated concerns that agencies such as Pharmac will have less power to secure the best deals for the New Zealand healthcare system. In a follow-up to his recent article …

Amicus Curiae: Remembering a Giant – Sir Peter Williams QC (1934-2015)

Sebastian Hartley, Communications Co-Manager Sir Peter Williams QC died yesterday evening aged eighty after a decade-long battle with prostate cancer. His investiture as a knight was carried out at a special ceremony at his Auckland home in April after being announced in the New Year’s Honour due to his deteriorating health. Following his admission to the bar in 1960, Sir Peter …

Amicus Curiae: Forcing a Discussion – Policy Changes in Sex Education

Pooja Upadhyay, Content Contributor The Ministry of Education has recently updated the formal guidelines of sexual education whereby state schools are now encouraged, but are not required, to include aspects of decision-making, sexual diversity and problem solving in their programmes. The rationale for these guidelines is to create an informational approach to sexual education; a departure from the traditional risk-based …

Amicus Curiae: Crime and Justice Investment in Budget 2015

Eugenia Woo, Leading Contributor The Budget for 2015 has recently been released, and the figures for crime and justice investment have left some discontent: the police budget has fallen after being frozen since 2010. Phil and Sharyn Taunt, who suffered a daylight burglary over Easter, are victims of crime who feel as if the plan for police spending outlined by the …

Amicus Curiae: Young Labour’s Gender Reassignment Surgery Proposal

Elizabeth Murray Yesterday, Labour MPs were questioned by the media about a policy remit put forward by Young Labour to ensure access and public funding to hormone replacement therapy and gender reassignment surgery. The proposal passed through two Young Labour regional party conferences, but still has a long way to go before even becoming part of the Labour Party’s policy …

Amicus Curiae: When The Courts Wave Play-On

Jason Kim Being a sports fan in 2015 is hard. Not in the sense that it’s more difficult to follow and enjoy the games – in fact, with the internet providing live streaming and content from all over the globe it’s never been easier to be a Real Madrid fan in India, to be an Oklahoma City Thunder fan in …

Amicus Curiae: Is Housing A Human Right?

Daniel Gambitsis New Zealand’s housing issues are a perennial news item, whether it is the price bubble, the leaky house crisis or state housing, and now David Rutherford, the Chief Human Rights Commissioner has addressed the issue. Mr Rutherford called for cross-party cooperation to confront the problems, bemoaning the lack of coordination in the current approach. He cited housing affordability and …