Labour MP for Manurewa Louisa Wall is vowing to continue the fight to ensure that gender identity is included in the Human Rights Act, despite today’s setback.
The government today rejected Wall’s request to have gender identity included specifically in the Human Rights Act.
Wall sought to introduce the change by having it included in the next Statutes Amendment Bill – which was dismissed by Associate Justice Minister Simon Bridges who said the measure “could generate public debate or controversy” and therefore was not suitable to be considered in the Statutes Amendment Bill.
Wall rejects that claim however saying “I believe that Statutes Amendment legislation is an appropriate vehicle to achieve such a change, to name gender identity in section 21(1)(a) as the government’s position is that discrimination based on gender identity is sex discrimination.
Speaking to express, the Manurewa MP says that “the reality is, this government doesn’t have the political will and continually focuses on this being a controversial change.”
Wall says that gender identity in New Zealand “is not explicitly protected as a ground of non-discrimination in our Human Rights Act. However, such complaints are received by the Commission under the ground of sex discrimination.”
Despite the setback, Wall will continue to fight for gender identity to be included in the Human Rights Act.
“Legal academics and the Human Rights Commission itself have recommended that gender identity should be explicitly protected under the Act. So, as an opposition MP, passionate about the human rights of all New Zealanders, I will continue to advocate for the New Zealand Government to amend the Human Rights Act 1993 to state explicitly that gender identity is a prohibited ground of discrimination.” the MP said.
“I remain committed to resolving this issue with and on behalf of our community and look forward to some leadership from the Human Rights Commission in advancing this issue.”
Article | Levi Joule.