Rushed Marriage Bill Angers Jilted Submitters

Media Release 4 February 2013
More than 200 submitters who have been denied the opportunity to make oral submissions on the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill have written an Open Letter to the Prime Minister John Key, the Speaker of the House, and the Select Committee considering the bill, questioning the speed with which the bill is being pushed through, and asking for the right to make their oral submission.

“This number of submitters is approximately the same as the number of submitters that the Select Committee has actually hand-picked to make oral submissions so far. It is quite evident that this bill is being rammed through and submitters are being effectively censored,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.

“Other Members’ bills are not being rammed through at such speed. Some of these bills are being considered by the same Select Committee. The Parental Leave and Employment Protection (Six Months’ Paid Leave) Amendment Bill was introduced a month before the same-sex marriage bill, and yet the Select Committee report is not due until August 2013. The Lobbying Disclosure Bill also had its first reading a month before the same-sex marriage bill, yet the report is not due until the end of July. The Members of Parliament (Remuneration and Services) Bill – a government bill – has 12 months for the Select Committee to consider.”

“Yet the same-sex marriage bill has just six months to consider 20,000-plus submissions, hear oral submissions, and report back. This is a cynical but calculated attempt to ram through a highly controversial law change without due consideration and debate,” says Mr McCoskrie.

Family First NZ has written to the Chairperson of the Select Committee twice without any acknowledgement or answers to their queries, and they are also seeking assistance from the new Speaker of the House.

TEXT OF OPEN LETTER

OPEN LETTER

Denying the Opportunity to Make Oral Submissions on the ‘Same-Sex Marriage’ Bill

We, the undersigned, are calling for the Government Administration Select Committee hearing submissions on the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill to hear our oral submissions.

The fact that a record 20,000 submissions have been received on this bill shows just how important this issue is to so many people. It is a major change to an important human institution and foundation of our society.

We reject any claim that some of our submissions are ‘form letters’ simply because some of us followed the easy-to-use layout guidelines provided by groups such as Family First NZ. If anything, they assisted us in participating in the democratic process. Why is that involvement now being denied?

Our submissions were carefully considered and expressed our own personal views on this controversial bill.

We note that other Members’ bills are not being dealt with at such speed.

  • The Parental Leave and Employment Protection (Six Months’ Paid Leave) Amendment Bill was introduced a month before the same-sex marriage bill, and yet the Select Committee report is not due until August 2013 i.e. more than a year to consider.
  • The Gambling (Gambling Harm Reduction) Amendment Bill has 11 months to consider and hear submissions before the Select Committee report is due.
  • The Lobbying Disclosure Bill (also being considered by the Government Administration Select Committee) also had its first reading a month before the same-sex marriage bill, yet the report is not due until the end of July i.e. 12 months to consider.
  • The Members of Parliament (Remuneration and Services) Bill – a government bill also being considered by the Government Administration Select Committee – has 12 months for the Select Committee to consider.
  • And the Manukau City Council (Regulation of Prostitution in Specified Places) Bill had its 1st Reading in September 2010 and the report is not due until July 2013!

Yet the same-sex marriage bill has just six months to consider 20,000+ submissions, hear oral submissions, and report back.

Why the rush? We believe the marriage bill is hugely significant to our nation – as evidenced by the massive number of submissions.

It is quite obvious that the same-sex marriage bill is being rushed through without appropriate debate and consideration.

In a healthy democracy, the people are entitled to speak and deserve to be heard in full. It should not be rushed, and democracy should not be denied, just because of a pre-determined reporting date which fails to recognise the weight of the issue.

We ask for the right to speak to our submission.

 

First   name/s Surname City Organisation   (if applicable)
John   & Rosemary Adams Palmerston   North  
Darryn Alexander Auckland  
Grant Alexander Rotorua  
John Allen Upper   Hutt  
Bernie Allen Auckland  
Heather Ameye-Bevers Auckland  
Peter Anderson Auckland Mairangi Bay Community Church
John Aplin Auckland  
Zachary Ardern Auckland  
George Armitage Tauranga  
Alan Armstrong Timaru  
Kerryn Bailey Auckland  
Bayleigh Baird Twizel  
Reuel Baptista Auckland  
Chris   & Jenny Bargh Martinborough  
Dominic Baron Upper   Hutt  
Sally   & John Barton    
Doaa Bayoumy Auckland Islam
Dennis   & Valda Beach    
Tony Becker    
Peter   & Judith Best Gisborne  
Jean Beynon Greymouth  
Margaret Bijl Auckland  
Chuck Bird Waikato  
Stephen   & Christine Black Hamilton  
Angela Bodley Auckland  
Elaine Borger Nelson  
Margaret Bowden    
Mike Brewer Auckland  
Antony   & Deanne Bridle Silverdale  
Jeph Burns Canterbury  
Nick Burtenshaw Auckland  
Deborah Burton Wellington  
Scott Butters    
Kathleen Campbell Otaki  
Bill Capamagian Tauranga  
Brian Caughley Wellington Intercessors   for New Zealand
Carl Cerecke Auckland  
Mark Chapman Hamilton  
Peter Cheyne Dunedin  
Patsy Christie Kapiti  
Simone Colwill Auckland  
Peter Constable Christchurch  
Neil Coup Lower   Hutt  
Margaret Cowan Timaru  
Leighton   & Stephanie Crocker    
Neville   & Rosie Cross Timaru  
Richard,   Linda & Jason Crowsen Auckland  
Hugh Cunningham Hawera  
Wayne Curham Canterbury  
Chris   & Kara Dawson Hamilton  
Bernadette de   Wit Quaife    
Dyanne Dixon Auckland  
Gay-Lyn Dos   Santos Hamilton  
Murray   & Alice Downs Te Awamutu  
Paul Duncan Glen Eden  
George Elkington Porirua  
Lois Elliott Northland  
Tasha   & Stuart Ellis Auckland  
Levi Ensing    
Josiah Ensing Auckland  
Hank Ensing Waikato  
Rosemary Erlam Auckland  
Tim   & Lynne Euinton Auckland  
Marian Evers Masterton  
Jane Eyre Hamilton  
Phil Fairbrass Wellington Wainuiomata   Baptist Church
Robin Fellingham Fielding  
Jane Fergusson Morrinsville  
David Flavell Auckland  
Steve Fletcher Lower   Hutt  
Tim   & Michelle Fletcher Te   Kuiti  
Rev   Michael Flynn Palmerston   North Reformed   Church of Palmerston North.
Hermann Frank Timaru  
Bruce   & Helene Fraser    
Martin Frauenstein Christchurch  
Dr   Pavel Gajdusek Timaru  
Luboslava Gajduskova Timaru  
Mike Gallagher Auckland  
Jenny Glen Kapiti  
Celine Goulding    
Peter Grace    
Roland Green Dunedin  
Roger   & Karyn Hamon Waipa  
Julianne Hannah Riccarton  
Patrick Harris Auckland  
David Hart Tauranga  
Sandra Hellewell Christchurch  
Simeon Hemus Auckland  
Phil Henderson Napier Onekawa   Bible Church
Janet Higham Auckland  
Julian Highsted Christchurch  
Eric Hill    
Graham   & Jess Hodder    
Brandon Holman    
Leo   & Glenys Hume Auckland  
John Irvine Hamiton  
Bert   & Robyn Jackson Hamilton  
Eric   & Joan Jackson    
Stephen Jenkinson Hawkes   Bay  
Stella Kenyon Hamilton  
Nick Kile   Kile   Family Trust Limited
Jo Kimi Auckland  
Jaap Knegtmans Upper   Hutt  
Graeme Knowles Wellington  
Carol Kohl    
Patricia Kubala Wellington  
Bill Lambert    
Bronwyn Lane Warkworth  
Pauline Lanigan Howick  
Geoff Laurent Auckland  
Frances Lavin    
Michael Lawry Auckland  
Iliganoa Leota   Ah Poe Manurewa  
Ruth   & Noel Linton Tauranga  
Bruce Logan Christchurch  
Maurice Lovegrove Pukekohe Franklin   Christian Lobby
Anne Maclean    
Tony McCall    
Christine McDonald Masterton  
Rosemary McElroy Auckland  
Marion McEwing    
Madeline McGilvray Invercargill  
Robert McGowan    
Andrew McIntosh Wellington  
James McKillop New   Plymouth  
Dennis McLeod    
Agnes McLintock Christchurch  
Jim   & Jenny McPhee Melton  
Allan McPherson Wanganui  
Allistair Meikle Gore  
Roy Menzies Auckland  
Victor Meyer Auckland  
Hudson Millar Hamilton  
Joanna Moss    
Peter Mullholland Wanganui  
Barry Muntz Tairua  
Ruth Murray Auckland  
Gavin Naftel Wellington  
Tani Newton Oamaru  
Nigel Ngatuakana    
Ryan Nickelchok Auckland  
Emil Nye Okiato   Russell  
Angela O’Donnell Christchurch  
Brendan O’Hagan Blenheim Blenheim   Christian Ministers Association
Paul   & Philippa O’Neill Dunedin  
Tuvalu   & Ingrid Papau Auckland  
Matthew Parfitt Christchurch  
Gary Parker    
William Pascoe Palmerston   North  
Stewart Patrick Gisborne Mangapapa   Church
Roger Peart Raglan  
Mary Pepping    
Ron   & Kay Peterson Nelson  
Jessica Polgase    
Jase   and   Evelyn Preston Waikato  
Hilary Radloff    
Mrs   Vanessa Ralph Kapiti   Coast  
Diana Ranger Wellington  
Raffi Rassam    
Victoria Raw Blenheim  
John Redshaw Hamilton  
Jonathan Rees Masterton  
Christine Reeves Gisborne
Brent   & Sue Reid Masterton  
Joshua Riddle    
Ken Riddle    
Chris,   Shalini & Denver Saldhana    
Maria Schmetzer Christchurch  
Bert Schoneveld    
Boyd Scirkovich Hamilton  
Robert   & Linda Scott Wanganui  
Tracey Scott Northland  
Colin Shilston Warkworth Gateway   Church
Scott Silsbee Hamilton  
Stephanie Simmons    
Dave Sowerby Wellington  
Gordon   & Helen Stanley Northland Otamatea   Cooperating Parish
Susan Steele Auckland  
Meryl Strawbridge Palmerston   North  
Todd   & Caroline Stretton Auckland  
Gina Sunderland Upper   Hutt Riverstones   Church
Trevor Taylor Westport  
Tony Thompson Auckland  
Lucy   & Chris Thomson-Ryan    
Jonathan   & Meredith Thorpe Nelson  
Bill Tissingh    
Melda Townsley Wellington Catholics   United for the Faith
Sheryll Turei Te   Aroha  
Christine Turner    
Daniel Tustin Bay   of Plenty  
Don   & Nancy van   Dorp    
Andre van   Heerden Auckland  
Robert van   Wichen   Reformed Church of Bishopdale
Rob   & Janet Vaughan    
Arnoud Vergunst Carterton  
John Verhoeff    
Sheldon Vincent Dargaville  
Elodie Vujcich Kaikohe  
John Vujcich Kaikohe Kaikohe   (Rau Marama) Community Trust
Joy Wadham    
Renee Wall Hamilton  
Terence Wallbank Auckland  
Nicola Walsh Tauranga  
Joshua   & Frances Wanhill    
Dennis   & Norma Walker Northland  
Chris Watson Wellington  
Matthew   & Lin Li Webster    
Mike   & Anna Webster Auckland  
Liz Webster Hamilton  
Mark Wells Christchurch  
Linda Wheeler    
Patrick White  
Neil Whitehead Lower   Hutt  
Geoff Wiklund Auckland  
Daniel Wilkes Palmerston   North  
Rosa Wilkes Palmerston   North  
Philip Wilson Nelson  
David Wilson Wainuiomata  
Adele Wi   Repa Hamilton  
Peter Wood Lower   Hutt  
Graham Workman    
Mindy Wu Hamilton  
Hayley Yoon Henderson  
Andrew Young Auckland  
Miri Yun Wellington