Logie’s Parliamentary Debut

Kapiti’s Green MP Gives Maiden Speech

Jan Logie has joined the six other new Green MPs for their maiden speeches to Parliament today.

Jan, a Kapiti Coast resident,  came into Parliament as a list MP. She has the Women, Income Support, Immigration, Pacific Island Affairs, Ethnic Affairs and Human Rights portfolios.

Her maiden speech was due to be delivered at 5PM and she said she was both ‘nervous and excited’ about the milestone.

In NZ Sign Language

In honour of her colleague Mojo Mathers’ introduction into Parliament, all the Green MPs’ maiden speeches will be translated live into New Zealand sign language.

Mathers, who is profoundly deaf, was due to perform the first of a total of seven maiden speeches. She made history when she became New Zealand’s first profoundly deaf MP in November.

Row breaks out over paying note-takers

A row broke out yesterday between the Green Party and Dr Smith after Ms Mathers was told by the Speaker, Dr Lockwood Smith, she must pay the note-takers out of her own budget.

In order to participate in the debates in the House, a critical part of any MP’s job, she will need an electronic note-taker.

The Speaker  said his department was working to overcome the problem with technology and he would take advice from the Parliamentary Services Committee when they meet on March 7.

But Greens leader Metiria Turei said the matter needed to be resolved before then and has requested the committee meet sooner.

Smith said Greens should pay

Dr Smith had said  the Green party should look at ways to fund the note-takers.

But the party believes there are other options, such as using money from the budget of the Office of the Clerk.

This can be used to pay for ”the timeliness and quality of servicing of Te Reo Māori interpretation and translation services.” The approximately $30,000 required for electronic note taking would make up only 0.17 per cent of that budget, the party said.

Note: Ms Logie is writing a special report on this subject for KIN, which we hope to publish this week.