Earlier this year Phil Goff and I accepted a petition signed by almost 6,000 Kiwis concerned about the government’s cuts to compensation to those suffering from work-related hearing loss. Thanks to National, people with hearing impairment are the only group of New Zealanders required by law to demonstrate a particular percentage of disability before rehabilitation will be offered under the ACC scheme.
At yesterday’s Transport and Industrial Relations Select Committee meeting National members voted en-bloc to report back the petition of Louse Carroll and 5857 others to the House without hearing a single piece of evidence. That’s undemocratic and a slap in the face to all those who sought to have their concerns heard by their House of Representatives.
Having actively discriminated against those with hearing loss, the National government is now turning a deaf ear to their concerns. They aren’t even willing to allow them to come to Parliament and have their say. That’s frankly disgraceful. If almost 6,000 people were willing to take the time to sign a petition to Parliament, the least their elected representatives can do is allow them the courtesy of a hearing.