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Submission guide: Bill to protect trans rights

Fri 9 May 2014 In: Features View at Wayback View at NDHA

Rainbow Labour has put together a guide for making a submission on the Statutes Amendment Bill (No. 4), which includes an amendment from Louisa Wall which would fully protect trans rights. Labour Member of Parliament (MP) Louisa Wall has put forward an amendment in Parliament that would clarify the law so that it specifically says that “gender identity” is a prohibited ground for discrimination. Rainbow Labour believes in fairness, equality, and opportunity. We have put together this guide to help you make a submission, and learn more about the amendment. It’s important we support it because this amendment (if passed by Parliament) will help reduce discrimination in society and make the lives of trans New Zealanders better. You can make a difference by making a submission supporting Louisa’s amendment. What’s a submission? A submission is a fancy word for saying what you think about a draft law (a Bill). You will need to put your reasons for supporting the bill in writing. What can I say? You should start your submission by stating your name and that you support the Supplementary Order Paper No 432 to the Statutes Amendment Bill (No 4). Essentially, you should answer these two questions in your submission: · why you support this amendment, and · why it is important to you, your family, and/or the community. For example, you could include personal stories or experiences, and talk about how your values, principles and beliefs lead you to support this amendment. Your submission can be as long or as short as you like. Your submission can be made up of paragraphs, sentences – or even just bullet points if that’s all you want to put down. How do I learn more about this amendment? These links provide more information which will help you learn and understand more about the issues the amendment addresses. They also provide helpful information which you could include in your submission. Louisa’s amendment to the Bill is here Louisa spoke during the first reading (first stage) of this Bill explaining the history, context and reasoning for the amendment. You can read the speeches here And you can watch Louisa’s speech here: www.inthehouse.co.nz/video/32544 The Human Rights Commission published an important report on the rights of trans* people in 2008, called To Be Who I Am / Kia noho au ki toku ano ao. The full report and related information is here And the report’s executive summary is here One key part of the executive summary says: "There must be no doubt that trans people are protected from discrimination under the Human Rights Act 1993. The Inquiry considers that section 21(1) (a) of the Human Rights Act 1993 should be amended to state clearly that sex includes gender identity."The Solicitor General’s 2006 Crown Law opinion referred to in Louisa’s speech on whether the Human Rights Act gives protection to trans* people is here How do I make a submission? You can make the submission electronically through this page on the Parliament website. The webpage gives you the option to upload a Word document or type in your views on the submission form Parliament also has a guide on making Select Committee submissions, available here Can I speak to my submission? You can choose whether you speak to your submission or not. Please state whether you want to in the submission, as well on the Parliament website submission form. Speaking gives you an opportunity to reinforce and expand on the points you make in your submission, and telling your story and your reasons can make a big impact on the MPs who are considering the Bill. When do I need to submit by? You can put in your submission via the Parliament website by 11:59pm on June 6. I’m concerned about my privacy but I still want to submit. What should I do? Submissions are usually heard in public and written submissions are released publicly on the Parliament website. However, depending on the nature of the submission, committees can also hear evidence in private or in secret. Evidence heard in private will remain confidential until the bill to which it relates is reported back to Parliament. Secret evidence, on the other hand, remains secret unless the House chooses to disclose it. The committee considering this Bill could choose to hear submissions in private or in secret. If you require this, note your request in the submission form. If the committee agrees to your request then the committee staff can make appropriate arrangements.  Rainbow Labour - 9th May 2014    

Credit: Rainbow Labour

First published: Friday, 9th May 2014 - 9:15am

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