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Huo To Back Asian Advisory Board For Super City

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Raymond Huo
Raymond Huo

Asian engagement in decisions that affect their lives in Auckland Super City is essential, says Labour Associate Ethnic Affairs spokesperson Raymond Huo.

He has drafted an amendment to the Local Government (Auckland Council) Bill to establish an Asian Advisory Board that will perform an advisory role for the governing body on decisions relating to the Asian community. "The board will represent Asian community views and enable Asians to participate in the decision-making process of the new Auckland council." Raymond Huo said the Royal Commission's report provided profiles for Pacific and Asian people in Auckland, and identified the challenges they faced in terms of housing, health, wages, education and skills development, transportation, and socio-economic issues.

"Improvement in the lives of Pacific and other ethnic groups is reflected in an improvement in statistics for the rest of New Zealand generally. According to statistics, one-third of all Aucklanders were born overseas, with Asians making up 13 percent of the population --- the largest demographic after European and Maori.

"The Royal Commission said engagement with Pacific and Asian communities was critical to improving governance relationships and improving strategies aimed at increasing socio-economic productivity goals, and recommended establishing advisory panels for Pacific and ethnic or Asian communities," Raymond Huo said.

"However, the bill, as drafted, does not include Asian representation in the reorganisation of Auckland governance. My Supplementary Order Paper moves to guarantee this representation."

Raymond Huo said the board's membership would be determined by the governing body in consultation with Asian communities and community leaders. It would have a minimum of four members, appointed by a majority vote of the governing body, and the council would have to provide it with adequate resources.

Other amendments would require the governing body to meet the advisory board a minimum of once every three months, and to consult with the board in annual planning processes, Raymond Huo said. "The Asian population is projected to hit 400,000 in Auckland within seven years.

I urge National's Asian MPs to support my proposed amendment and to work together for this productive, hard-working proportion of the region's population. "It's not about politics. This is about what's best for the people of Auckland. We need to work together to ensure that our ethnic communities have a say on the future of Auckland."

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