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Green Party welcomes National's openness to cross-party discussion

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

The Green Party was pleased to see the National Party’s call this afternoon for cross-party action on mental health, and agrees that where New Zealanders’ wellbeing is at stake, Parliament should take action urgently and above and beyond politics.

"We are committed to working across Parliament wherever we can, to build consensus and ensure the decisions we make will stand the test of time," says Green Party youth spokesperson, Chlöe Swarbrick.

"Mental health issues touch the lives of almost all New Zealanders, and far too many people are still struggling without support. That’s why we actively negotiated its inclusion as a priority in our confidence and supply agreement with Labour.

"While we’re not clear on the terms of reference or intentions of Matt Doocey’s proposed cross-party group, we look forward to receiving his invitation, which we understand is in the mail.

"One aspect of mental health which requires particularly deep understanding and sustained political will to address is the connection to drug abuse and addiction, which is why in May I coordinated the first meeting of the Cross Party Group on Drug Harm Reduction.

"At the time we were disappointed to learn, from Matt Doocey, that the National Party did not want to be involved, but have continued to extend the invitation for the following two meetings.

"We welcome the National Party’s renewed vigour for cross-party action, and hope to see them at our next meeting to address drug harm reduction, roll up their sleeves with the rest of us and get on with tackling the big problems beyond politics."

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