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Hague highlights LGBTI issues in Valedictory speech

Wed 21 Sep 2016 In: New Zealand Daily News View at Wayback View at NDHA

Kevin Hague addressed the House yesterday for the last time as he gave his valedictory speech, bidding farewell to politics. In his final farewell, Hague highlighted three key areas important to the LGBTI communities and campaigns which he says he leaves behind.   In his final farewell, Hague acknowledged that the wider rainbow family have looked to him to deliver a promise of equal rights and opportunities over his eight years and although some of these have been addressed and delivered, there are still three key campaigns that have not. He noted that these are “Better health services for transgender New Zealanders, the petition that’s currently before the house for an apology and for wiping the convictions of gay men who were convicted of consensual sexual activity between adults before homosexual law reform and the other is my campaign to have the education review office required to audit the safety of all schools for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students.” He said that in 2014 it was shown that most secondary schools do not provide such a safe environment and that the education review office never exposes that. “Perhaps… as a farewell present?” he told the House. The now former Green Party MP, Hague has stepped down from his role in Parliament to take up a position as head of Forest and Bird. “It’s been an enormous honour to serve in this role, to stand here and to know that along with my Green colleagues, I represent an enormous number of New Zealanders who share our vision and our values,” he said. “I leave here proud of the work that I’ve helped to do, i also leave here with some regrets, I have projects that I believe in passionately that I won’t be able to see through to their conclusion. It goes against the grain for me to leave work unfinished.” Hague acknowledged Ruth Diason and Louisa Wall for their work with him on Marriage Equality issues and Nikki Kaye for her collaboration on a Bill to completely overhaul the adoption laws in this country and to whom he gave his best wishes for her recovery. An emotional speech from Hague, he finished his speech thanking his friends and family and his partner Ian as well as acknowledging his late mother and sister whom he dedicated his time in Parliament to and says “I hope they would have been proud.”    


First published: Wednesday, 21st September 2016 - 11:07am

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