Which one of the following Ministers is most important to the future of New Zealand?

Minister of Tourism
Minister for Children
Minister of Racing
Minister for Senior Citizens
Minister for Rugby World Cup

Which of those do we not have?

When I think of the future — at least in terms of potential — I tend to think about advancing the welfare of children … education, safety, health, poverty, their parenting, the whole lot.

Now certainly there will be other things that affect their future well-being …like whether we squander their environment or build for them an economy that pays survivable — let alone attractive — wages right here in NZ.

But those broader issues aside, doesn’t it make sense to have a Minister-level advocate for children? Who else is going to represent them — the future — at the adults’ Cabinet table, where the agenda otherwise is ‘How can we save our skins today’?

Labour’s Deputy Leader Annette King, in a recent speech to her party on the subject of New Zealand’s kids, noted that a 2009 OECD report ranked NZ 29th out of 30 countries for child health and safety.

She proposed a Minister for Children, and a way to pay for it.

Party politics aside (like Labour’s history with the former Racing Minister), isn’t this an idea worth considering?

Tom Belford

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  1. Hi Tom,

    Obviously the Labour Party didn't think it worthy of consideration when they were in power so why are they proposing it now they are in Opposition?

    Kind Regards,


  2. Does anyone really need another govt dept? We have CYF's part of the Ministry of Social Development and the Ministry of Education. They are supposed to make sure they are safe and cared for along with giving them an education. Some parents also take an interest in such matters.

    This new ministry of children will do what in addition to this? The suggestion sounds like good politics, but not a meaningful new idea. Apart from perhaps the minsiter of tourism, we could safely get rid of the rest on that list.

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