PM Under Pressure to Allow Easter Conscience Vote

Media Release 22 August 2016
Family First NZ says that the Prime Minister has received hundreds of emails from families over the past 18 hours asking for the National party to allow a conscience vote on Easter Trading.

“If a conscience vote was allowed, the proposed law change being voted on this week would likely be defeated. According to the voting records of National MPs recorded in Family First’s Value Your Vote resource over the past three elections, six current National MPs have opposed Easter Trading laws, and a further six National MPs could not be guaranteed to support it. Ironically, one of those who has been inconsistent in their voting on this issue is Minister Michael Woodhouse who is pushing the proposed law change,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.

“Easter trading has always been a conscience issue, and the Prime Minister John Key should allow that to continue.”

Family First is also warning that Christmas Day, Anzac Day and Easter Friday will soon be regular trading days based on the government’s intention and justification to push through Easter Sunday trading laws.

“Ironically, the Easter Sunday trading laws proposed by the government will do nothing to solve the perceived problems of inconsistency, and will be a ‘hospital pass’ to local councils. The only people celebrating this proposed law change will be those who are making money from it,” says Mr McCoskrie.

“Economic issues need to be finely balanced with family and community factors. Anzac Day, Easter, and Christmas remain as the few times when the whole country stops and takes a break. This is not an issue about choice as has also been argued. For many workers, they don’t have the luxury of choice as to whether they work or not. Coercion to work will be a very real threat.”

“The Prime Minister needs to listen to the concerns of families and workers.”

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