Great turn-out today at the rallies in support of Radio NZ at Parliament and also in Christchurch.
Labour and Green MPs turned out to support the 200+ people who arrived with just a day or two’s notice to express opposition to Government efforts to freeze-cut Radio NZ’s services.
Meanwhile I was addressing a smaller gathering outside Radio New Zealand House in my Christchurch electorate, saying the Government should look across its broadcasting spend at what efficiencies that might be applied to support Radio New Zealand.
All up, the state has a net flow of than half a billion dollars into and out of broadcasting. Finding $1 million across that array of funding and revenue would be easier than finding similar savings from Radio NZ’s under-pressure $38m budget. And the difference that sort of money would make to Radio NZ would be considerable.
Today we also launched a website – Hands off Our Dial – www.handsoffradionz.co.nz – to provide an ongoing site for people to register their support for Radio NZ. It includes an e-petition to provide more signals to the Government that Radio NZ is a much-loved institution and cuts to services are not acceptable.