Posts Tagged ‘Family Party’

PM Attempting to Shut Down Referendum Debate

Wednesday, June 17th, 2009


18 June 2009

PM Attempting to Shut Down Referendum Debate

Family First NZ is annoyed with comments by the Prime Minister John Key that he will ignore the results of the upcoming anti-smacking Referendum and will not be allowing Families Commissioner Christine Rankin to enter the debate.

“The Referendum is an expensive exercise made necessary because of a failure by politicians to listen to the voters,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. “It is hypocritical of politicians to criticize the cost when their own actions have led to this public outcry.”

“John Key is undermining the process by suggesting that, while he will ‘listen to the public’, any law change will be subject to what he thinks.”

“It is especially ironic because while he was the leader of the Opposition he said

The Labour Government has shown utter contempt for New Zealanders and the democratic process with its plan to railroad the anti-smacking bill through Parliament. The Labour-led Government knows the measure is deeply unpopular, so it plans to act against the wishes of the majority of Kiwis and ram the bill through under urgency. This is a deeply cynical abuse of power as Labour tries to clear the decks of this controversial issue. Helen Clark has refused to let her MPs vote the way they really think on this bill. To ram it through under the cover of urgency shows just how out of touch her government has become.”

Family First has provided the evidence he has set as the benchmark for changing the law – that is, evidence of good families being prosecuted in court under the anti-smacking law.

“It is also completely unacceptable that he is attempting to shut down debate by preventing Christine Rankin from being part of the debate. It appears that the government has adopted an attitude of ‘agree with us or don’t speak’.”

“This suggests that the new government is following down the road of the previous government – which ultimately led to its downfall – of ignoring the voice of NZ’ers and shutting down debate,” says Mr McCoskrie.


For More Information and Media Interviews, contact Family First:

Bob McCoskrieNational Director

Mob. 027 55 555 42

Home discipline still a hot topic

Friday, October 24th, 2008

Home discipline still a hot topic

4:00AM Saturday Oct 25, 2008
By Carroll du Chateau

In a year when the morals and ethics of our political parties seem at an all-time low, voters are focused on policies sidling into our sitting rooms.

Many morally contentious issues are designated conscience votes by political parties, meaning their members do not have to vote along party lines.

The anti-smacking bill proposed by Sue Bradford of the Greens and finally cobbled together by Helen Clark and John Key started out as a conscience issue and ended up as a party vote for Labour, National and the Greens, who voted 100 per cent in favour.

Meanwhile, there was overwhelming opposition to the bill out in the community. Parents do not want the Government telling them how to parent. They say loss of discipline at home contributes to bad behaviour, out-of-control youngsters and, eventually, rising crime.

Many say the Government is sending the wrong message to the young.

“The idea that smacking should be against the law is ridiculous,” says Rodney Hide who, as leader of Act, stands for individual freedom and personal responsibility. “The fact that a small smack on the bottom should be up there with bashing kids with a pipe offends me.”

Mr Hide’s position is echoed by Richard Lewis of the Family Party (a Christian offshoot of last election’s Destiny Party) and Bob McCroskie of Family First. While Mr McCroskie’s organisation is a pressure group rather than a political party, it has signed on as a Third Party and is spending a chunk of its allocated $120,000 to push family values – and undermine this legislation.

Mr McCroskie says the law sends an underlying message that parents aren’t really in charge. “Kids are saying, ‘You can’t tell me what to do!’ We need to establish parenting within the law and parents don’t feel they’ve got it.” He talks about a consistent message (feeding through legislation) that we don’t rate parents.

“We don’t recognise parenting as a career choice. The message is, ‘If you want to be a contributing member of society, get yourself a real job.”‘

He is talking about paid parental leave, 20 hours’ free childcare and all the other measures designed to make it easy for mothers to go back to work.

Mr Lewis insists the old legal defence in smacking cases “never protected anyone from child abuse. I think this bill exposes parents unfairly. There are reports of children turning up to school with innocent scrapes and bruises and being asked, ‘Did your parents do it?”‘

Sue Bradford fervently disagrees. A mother of five, she insists she is a staunch defender of the family. “It’s the ability to beat your children that undermines the family.” She also defends the Parental Notification Bill, which allows teenagers under 16 to have abortions without their parents being aware of them. “My belief is that a woman’s body is her own.” ‘

Less high-profile is the ethical issue around the refusal to pay parents and family caring for disabled children and adults, while professional carers qualify for funding. The practice was challenged in a tribunal hearing brought against the Ministry of Health by the Director of Human Rights Proceedings on grounds of discrimination against parents and families.

While all parties except Labour express concern at the unfairness of the law, only the smaller parties are prepared to change it. United Future would introduce a caregivers’ allowance; the Maori Party would ensure disabled people and whanau could access support; the Progressives favour funding “as fiscal conditions permit”.

Labour, meanwhile, is committed to steering away from the issue, instead pledging to provide $37 million on extra daycare and respite services, family caregiver support, extra funding for home-based support services plus wider criteria for the DPB so low-income couples and sole parents could receive extra support to care for sick or disabled children.

One ethical area where the larger parties are taking a risk is with gangs. Gangs are seen as an integral part of our social fabric and stopping people gathering together breaches ethical boundaries. The proliferation of P has Labour and National talking about cracking down on gangs – again putting them out of step with Christian parties who claim the Government should focus on eliminating drug dealing rather than the gangs themselves.

Another matter bothering Mr Hide is the issue of self-defence “Some things are worse than being charged: A, being a wimp and B, being dead.”

* Since the law came in

Sixteen months after the law change in May last year, eight parents have been prosecuted. One received diversion, one was discharged without conviction and six cases are yet to be resolved.

This, says John Key, supports the view that the law is being well administered by police.

A petition for a referendum on the legislation, which asked the question “Should a smack as part of good parental correction be a criminal offence in New Zealand?” gained 390,000 signatures, 310,000 of which were judged valid. To trigger a referendum, 10 per cent of registered voters (285,000) need to sign it. The referendum will be held next year.


From a link above:

National: Anti-smacking legislation to stay.

Richard Lewis Speech To ‘NZ Forum On The Family

Tuesday, September 9th, 2008

Richard Lewis Speech To ‘NZ Forum On The Family’

Kia ora ladies and gentlemen,

On behalf of the Family Party, I want to thank you for this opportunity to bring something of our message to you today.

It’s great to see so many people who share our passion. Particularly those grassroots organisations who have dedicated their lives to improving the position of New Zealand families.

By way of background, I’m married to Mandy and we are blessed with two children.

My father is of Ngati Awa and Ngati Kahungunu descent. On that note, I want to acknowledge Dr Pita Sharples from Kahungunu: tena koe.

As a young Maori boy my father was raised on a farm and schooled at Whakarewarewa, near Rotorua. My mother on the other hand was born in London and educated in a British school for girls.

So if I seem a little schizophrenic here today it’s because one half of me wants to read religiously from my notes while the other half would be more comfortable with a guitar and a few yarns.

My career background is primarily in the police where I served over a decade on the frontlines and in the CIB. My final role before leaving the police was as a sergeant in charge of an emergency response group here in South Auckland.

But today I am honoured to serve the Family Party as its leader. And I’m thankful to have this opportunity to share our message with you today.

The Family Party was created primarily for two reasons: To reinstate traditional family values and to put families first again in Parliament.

These statements obviously imply that traditional family values and the institution we call ‘family’ once had a place of respect and position in New Zealand politics, and that this is no longer the case.

I believe that is our current reality: evidenced by the fact that New Zealand’s oldest and largest political party thought it not important enough to attend today’s Forum on the Family.

Yesterday I thought about the policies I should present but realise they will be similar, if not the same, to many of the ideas you will hear from other speakers today. Since it is a family-focused forum.

For example, the Family Party is all for a lower and flatter tax structure that keeps more money in the home.

We support income splitting for married couples. We want to fix the smacking laws, repeal the prostitution act and get more cops on the frontlines. We want to confront the drug dealing epidemic and youth gangs and we’ve got a strategy to do it. We want sentencing to reflect the seriousness of crimes committed. New Zealand’s culture of ‘abortion on demand’ requires urgent attention. The Electoral Finance Act is a shambles and needs to be scrapped.

One of our more adventurous policies is axing GST on basic food-groups and fuel to help families through tough economic times. I see the Maori Party recently adopted this policy. It’s a shame they haven’t adopted our position on the anti-smacking issue too.

We’ve got a wide range of pro-family policies you can view if you feel so inclined on

But with my remaining time allotment I want to get to the base-issue and the heart of why New Zealand needs the Family Party beyond 2008.

The single most important issue facing our nation today is ‘family breakdown.’

Family breakdown and more specifically, fatherlessness, is underneath the vast majority of social ills being manifest in our communities today.

Economy, education, health, welfare, justice, law and order, environment, government… all of these begin in the home. The health of our nation in my view, is the sum total of the families in it.

You could say ‘family breakdown’ is to the Family Party… what global-warming-theory is to the Greens.

The difference is, family breakdown’ is categorically man made.

And unlike New Zealand’s miniscule carbon emissions, (relative to population), we are a world-leader when it comes to family breakdown and fatherlessness.

Yet current politicians choose to ignore family breakdown and its roots. Their preference is to spend billions of dollars to achieve a status of ‘world leader’ on global warming. And they want you and I to pay for it.

‘Family breakdown’ on the other hand, is an ever-present reality that has arrived on all of our doorsteps.

Here in South Auckland we’re getting our fair share of attention with all manner of social dysfunctions of the worst kind. Murders, street prostitution, gang violence, poverty, robberies, home invasions, generational dependency. I’m sure you’re familiar with the stories.

As a former police officer who has served this community and seen the worst of it, I came to this realisation. Law and Order is not first a police issue… it is first a family issue. I believe the same applies across the board.

Identifying and acknowledging the problem means we can deal with it.

The good news ladies and gentlemen, is that unlike global warming, restoring strength to New Zealand families doesn’t necessarily have to cost any of us a single cent.

We don’t need any more surveys, studies or reports to tell us what the problems are. Save the money. Give it back in tax cuts or channel it to those on the coalface doing the real work.

Under the current regime we don’t even need a Families Commission to tell us families are important. Save the money. Give it back in tax cuts or channel it to those on the coalface doing the real work.

Nor do we need a Children’s Commission to tell us children are important. Save the money. Give it back in tax cuts or channel it to those on the coalface doing the real work.

Bringing meaningful change simply starts with Government changing its attitude and thinking towards families.

It’s a state of mind that understands if families are functional, healthy and prosperous, our nation will be too.

It’s an ethic that approaches policy on the basis of ‘what’s good for families is good for our country.’ It recognises that parents, not the state, are responsible for raising the next generation.

It recognises that families should be free to build their own economy, independent of, and without strings attached to the state.

It recognises that a wise government would protect and encourage the institution of marriage, which is the tried and proven stable basis for child-raising.

It recognises that the best Families Commission, the best Children’s Commission, indeed, the best form of Government, is actually the ‘family’ itself.

We’re talking about the traditional ‘values system’ that now more than ever, needs to be rekindled in New Zealand’s Parliament. I believe it can be because our forebears laid the foundations with families in mind.

We just have to extract the political deadwood and blow fresh life on the embers.

The alternative is more political correctness that suffocates families and the inherent potential of our children. The alternative means weaker families and bigger government. The alternative is a renegade generation that lacks identity and purpose.

To tackle family breakdown doesn’t have to cost us anything. But not to, will eventually cost us everything.

So again, this year we have a choice.

I want to touch in referendums. I understand the call for them. But they are not the ultimate answer. Referendums are a response to a Government that gets out of sync with the electorate.

How is it that the two major political parties could pass the anti-smacking bill against the overwhelming public majority? The answer ladies and gentlemen, is politics being put ahead of people through politicians who carry a different set of values to that of the electorate.

Doesn’t it make more sense to elect people who carry our values so that political decisions are more likely to harmonise with the people.

I do want to acknowledge the incredibly hard work undertaken by Larry Baldock and his team on the anti smacking petition.

As a side note, the anti-smacking debate continues to be misrepresented by those politicians responsible for pushing it through. Jeanette Fitzsimons said this morning that bashing a child was not a crime until Section 59 was repealed. This is simply not true. I can tell you that I have arrested parents for bashing their children and that happened well before Section 59 was repealed. Section 59 never protected child abusers.

Now touching quickly on our organisation, the Family Party is a Christian political vehicle that has a management board of wonderful people from a wide range of professional backgrounds and churches.

We have already announced a number of fantastic candidates and will be announcing more in the very near future, which is very heartening based on 11 months of building.

Our strategy to win seats in order to remove the 5% threshold is proving fruitful and we are well positioned with the election date announcement due any day now.

The final thought I want to put to you today is this: the thing most political parties have in common is that they pursue a healthy economy with the idea of contributing back to families.

The Family Party takes the opposite approach. We believe by pursuing healthy and prosperous families we’ll achieve much, much more for our nation and our economy.

The Family Party offers you that fresh approach and a dogged determination to stand up against the PC culture: to declare an end to over a decade’s worth of social experimentation on New Zealand families.

To come back to the basics: to reinstate traditional family values and put families first again in Parliament.

That’s exactly what New Zealand needs. And that’s why the Family Party is the best choice for voters at this year’s General Election.

Thank you for your time and your attention.


Govt creating renegade generation

Monday, June 23rd, 2008


Govt creating renegade generation

24 June 2008. The Family Party is calling on the Prime Minister to acknowledge the concerns of the majority of New Zealanders by holding the smacking referendum at the General Election.

In today’s NZ Herald Prime Minister Helen Clark has virtually ruled out a referendum on smacking at this year’s election, saying there will not be time to organise one.

Family Party leader Richard Lewis says the smacking law remain a serious concern in South Auckland communities, where the Family Party has continued to collect petition signatures.

“The Prime Minister continues to manipulate New Zealand’s democratic process by denying New Zealanders the opportunity to have their say on this very important issue at the most cost-effective and expedient opportunity, which is this coming General Election. It is this kind of disregard towards the concerns of New Zealanders that has rendered Labour irrelevant and out of touch with the realities of everyday family life,” said Mr Lewis.

Mr Lewis says the Government has failed to make the connection between Law and Order and parental authority in the home.

“Not a day goes by without a parent raising the issue of parental correction and establishing boundaries in the home. Government still fails to realise that Law and Order begins in the home. By undermining parents in the home they’re setting up a generation of kids to be renegades in community. So don’t be surprised when more children and young people emerge into community with a bad attitude and a complete disregard for others and authority,” he added.


Richard Lewis

0275 398730

Family Party online advertisement

Comments on TVNZ Online eye-to-eye: debate

Sunday, June 8th, 2008

Well…I’ve watched this Eye2Eye program.

It’s the usual useless sort of TV setup that uses a ‘crisis’ as a means of entertainment and solves nothing.

Anyway…yes, Christine and Richard landed some good hits and got a bit of clarity, but at the end they both fell into a Marxist semantic trap, and unbeknown to themselves began arguing for the other side.

They started using the language of State/Society ownership of children – “Our children, our babies…” etc, as though corporate man/class man/Marxist man has a greater interest and stake in the welfare of children than parents do, or that parents somehow raise children for the State. (‘State’ and ‘Society’ are intentionally capitalized because today ‘the State’ is the most powerful of modern gods). This view is utterly false and just indicates the degree to which Marxists have captured the language, and thus control the debate. Christine it seemed to me was statist in many of her statements, as was Willie in his closing comment, both effectively saying the State had to solve the problem. In fact ‘the cause of problem’ was never even identified. The swiftness with which they all (not sure about Richard) invoked State intervention at the end was worrying.

To use Marxist language of State/Society ownership should be anathema to us, as it hands the debate to the Marxists who have the upper hand at the moment. We should look very carefully at all our language and expunge any Marxist terms from our vocab.

Within the Biblical worldview that has controlled much of Western thought on parenting and children in the past, parents don’t ‘own’ children any more than the state does. God the Creator is the ultimate owner of everything, including children and their parents, and states. However, in this view, what parents do have which the state does not have (ideally a very limited state with little connection to modern day, all encompassing, Socialist States), is the God-given responsibility to raise ‘their’ children (in the sense of offspring rather than ownership) to be God honouring, law abiding, productive people who serve others. Children are given to parents on trust by God, and parents are to steward their children on behalf of God. Parents in many ways stand in the place of God to their children, as his representatives to them as guides, nurturers, and administrators of justice as defined by God. Neither parents nor children are creatures or possessions of States. Thus parents do not raise children and steward them as surrogates of the State.

And ‘the cause of the problem’?

It is not ‘environmental’, i.e., colonization, class oppression, disparity of incomes, poor education, hard births or tight nappies as a child. It is ‘internal’ in that humans are individually and corporately rebels against God, and work that rebellion out in a multitude of ways, one of which is for the image of God in children to be abused.

Unfortunately Richard identified ‘poverty’ as one of the causes of child abuse. This is nothing but a thoughtless and unjustified slur on the myriads of parents throughout all time – the present being no exception – who have been poor but have not abused their children.

‘Poverty’ however is another great Marxist lever. Only they have redefined it to mean ‘relative poverty’. Thus, in the latest Investigate Mag, there is a critique of some social action group – clearly Marxist in orientation – who want to set the poverty level in NZ at ‘60% of the median household disposable income after housing costs.’ People with such an income aren’t poor, just relatively poor. They are actually incomprehensibly rich compared to the genuinely poor of the world. Unless their worldview allows for it or endorses it, the genuine poor who live in grinding poverty, are no more abusive than anyone else. We have the irony that the majority of those in the New Zealand Parliament (specifically including Sue Bradford and Helen Clark), and those in the highest positions appointed by the present Government (specifically Cindy Kiro) – all of whom are extremely wealthy, have a worldview that explicitly calls for and justifies the ultimate in child abuse. And so 18000 children are killed in their mother’s wombs every year in New Zealand. The gall of these people to brazenly say they are against child abuse and that poverty is a major cause, and yet exult over the wanton destruction of thousands of children, is almost beyond belief.

Material wealth or poverty is not an indicator of the likelihood of abuse. Moral/spiritual poverty however is and this may also be externally expressed by drunkenness, drug addiction, crime (dishonesty, theft, violence), promiscuity, unwillingness to work, etc. All of these things head a person to material poverty, and mark some of the distinctions in the book of Proverbs in the Bible between the deserving and undeserving poor.

The solution? The genuine conversion of violent, abusive individuals to the Christian Gospel, will over night remove those individuals from being abusive to others. If such conversion, with its accompanying transformation of the individual, does not occur and so does not remove the individual from the ranks of the abusers, then the abuse must be responded to as a matter of justice, of a wrong being committed against another. Unfortunately there is a problem at this level also, as today’s NZ Justice System not longer administers justice. Because of the rejection of its Christian roots grounded in the absolute standards of the Biblical worldview, it has lost all philosophical connection to real justice.

For a number of reasons, the Christian analysis of the problem and solution to it, is not even considered by most today as having any relevance to public societal matters. Thus the real solution is locked away from ever being applied.

All the best


TVNZ Online-eye to eye: debate

Thursday, June 5th, 2008
Hi Family Integrity
I thought you might be interested in this debate broadcast on Sunday TV1 Eye to Eye. It involves Christine Rankin and Richard Lewis against Sue Bradford and Paora Maxwell on child abuse and the anti smacking law. I think Rankin and Lewis do a particularly good job.
It can be viewed from this link

All the best


Comments on tvnz online-eye-to-eye debate