Media Release 20 October 2017
Family First NZ says that if a referendum is going to be held on legalising dope as requested by the Green party, then NZ First should also be delivering a referendum on the anti-smacking law, based on statements made by leader Winston Peters and NZ First before the election.
In a speech in March in Northland, leader Winston Peters said; “We are going to repeal the anti-smacking law which doesn’t work and has in fact seen greater violence towards children.” He then further clarified his position in an interview on Newstalk ZB saying that this matter should go to a referendum with New Zealand people who are “far more reliable and trustworthy on these matters, rather than a bunch of temporarily empowered parliamentarians.” This position was backed up by senior MP Tracey Martin.
“NZ First is now in a position to be able to protect good parents and put the focus where it should be – on rotten parents and actual abuse. The politicians and anti-smacking lobby groups linked good parents who smacked their children with child abusers, a notion roundly rejected – and still rejected – by NZ’ers. The anti-smacking law assumes that previous generations disciplined their children in a manner that was so harmful that they should now be considered criminals,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.
(In 2014, NZ First said “NZ First policy is to repeal the anti-smacking law passed by the last parliament despite overwhelming public opposition. Accordingly, we will not enter any coalition or confidence and supply agreement with a party that wishes to ignore the public’s clearly stated view in a referendum on that issue.”)