It’s Our Future: TPPA News Bulletin

It’s Our Future: TPPA News Bulletin #79
16 November 2015

In this Bulletin: Updates on Nationwide marches; Aotearoa NZ Peoples’ Demands; Media Coverage; Take Action Now; Key Issues from the text; Legal Action; and a Message from our friends at Real Choice.

Thanks to all for amazing rallies, marches, picnics and other events across the country last weekend. This was a crucial step in countering the media spin that the TPPA isn’t so bad and to suggesting that it’s too late. We got our message out there instead: It ain’t over. Don’t sign! We have kicked the pressure back up, our job is now to make the political cost too high for the government to sign this monstrous agreement.

Analysis of more than 6000 pages to look at the real dangers that are hidden behind the legal text, and we will produce hard-hitting fact sheets on the crucial ways that the TPPA will affect our environment, our people, our rights and our sovereignty.

It ain’t over in New Zealand and opposition to the TPPA is mobilising in other countries. We need to keep up the pressure. This is a fight that we can still win!

Aotearoa NZ Peoples’ TPPA Demands

The following demands were read out at each of the rallies and were widely supported by attendees.

The Government has no democratic mandate to sign away our democratic powers in the TPPA. Before it takes any steps towards signing the agreement, the Government shall:

  1. Undertake independent human rights, health, environmental and climate change impact assessments of the potential effects of the TPPA on the people and land of New Zealand, and make this information publicly available.
  2. Support Local Government New Zealand to undertake an independent assessment of the impacts on local government of the TPPA, and consult fully with local government.
  3. Fully engage with its Treaty of Waitangi partners to hear and address their concerns about the TPPA and refer the text and any proposed legislation to the Waitangi Tribunal to conduct a full risk assessment of impacts on tangata whenua; iwi and hapū.
  4. Withdraw its consent to the secrecy pact among the twelve TPPA countries and release all background documentation relating to the negotiations.
  5. Initiate a full public and parliamentary debate on the TPPA, including Select Committee hearings with public consultation, and put the TPPA to a public referendum, before formal signing.

We will continue to mobilise New Zealand citizens in opposition to the TPPA until our demands have been met.

These demands, plus some basic info on TPPA, are available as an A4 pdf here and an A5 pdf here.
http://itsourfuture.org.nz/aotearoa-nz-peoples-tppa-demands/

Media Coverage

Media coverage over the weekend was dominated by the tragedy in Paris, but we still managed to get quite a few stories in different publications.

Before Rally
10/11/15          Northern Advocate
Bay News Bites: Big crowd expected at show (briefs)
11/11/15          Bay of Plenty Times
Tauranga protest against signing of TPPA
13/11/15          Gisborne Herald
Gisborne TPPA protest march tomorrow
14/11/15          Newstalk ZB
Thousands expected at nationwide TPP events
14/11/15          3 News
More protests against the TPP
Rally Coverage
14/11/15          3 News
TPP protests across the country
14/11/15          Manawatu Standard
Hundreds rally in Palmerston North against controversial trade deal
14/11/15          Gisborne Herald
Protesting the TPPA in Gisborne
15/11/15          3 News
TPPA protests draw big crowds
15/11/15          The Press
Protesters rally against TPPA in Christchurch
16/11/15          Nelson Mail
TPPA campaigners ‘sick of being ignored’ plan to step up protests
16/11/15          Rotorua Daily Post
Rotorua joins protest action over TPP
16/11/15          Otago Daily Times
Anti-TPP battle continues, rally told

Take Action Now!

Make a ‘Real Choice’ – the folks behind “Show us ya text’ have now launched an awesome campaign to call on the government to hold a referendum on the TPPA. If we’re holding two referendums on a flag that hardly anyone wants, what about a real referendum on protecting our sovereignty? Sign up to demand a referendum at Real Choice, and check out the message from them at the bottom of this message.

TPPA Free Zones – declare your home a TPPA Free Zone, or get your workplace to do so, your community centre, marae, youth centre, sports club, or wherever. Download the logo here.

Get active on the media – Use your influence with local and national media, and social media to get the word out, using the ‘Key Issues’ briefing below. We need to tell them that it’s not over and the we must not sign.

Message to Labour: Come down off that fence – A strong opposition to the TPPA needs the largest opposition party to be active and consistent. See Jane Kelsey’s open letter to Andrew Little here explaining how the TPPA abjectly fails ALL of Labour’s five tests and click here for information on how to contact your Labour MP.

Build our support base – Get more of your friends, whanau, neighbours, work colleagues and community to wake up to this very real danger to our democracy. We are planning a roadshow in February/March to educate and mobilise more people to support our struggle. We will be putting a callout to see who can help organise a local meeting.

Key Issues emerging from the analysis of the text
The final text of the TPPA was released on 5 November 2015. Initial analysis of the text shows the NZ government has misled the public through spin, inflated claims and self-serving omissions. The economic benefits have been exaggerated, the economic and social costs understated and future risks ignored.
Read a three page analysis document here.

Support the Legal Case against Government secrecy
Please donate to the case the Dr. Jane Kelsey has brought against the government. The action has already been supported by a Court ruling that will strengthen access to OIAs in future. Help end the secrecy so that we can hold the government to account. Donate here.


A Message From Our Friends at Real Choice

Please share this message with your groups and networks.

Hi, it’s Ben here from Real Choice, asking for the help of you and your organisation.

We believe the government has acted undemocratically in its TPPA negotiation. This is too important to be left up to a small group of MPs to decide, and should be put to a binding referendum vote. So Real Choice is giving Kiwi’s a voice by running a nationwide peoples’ referendum on whether or not we ratify the TPPA, beginning next week.

From Monday 23rd till Monday the 30th of November, we’ll be holding our own referendum online (you can see the live referendum website HERE) asking whether the NZ government should ratify the TPP. We have set up a secure online voting platform and need volunteers to set up ‘polling stations’ around the country to collect votes during polling week.

We’ll need as many people as possible to vote in our referendum. That’s why we’re asking you to post links to the referendum (at vote.tppa.nz) in your own communications during the voting period. Whether it’s being included in your newspaper or being posted on Facebook, we’re looking for your support to enable us to get more voters.

On Monday, will you send a notification to your email list and invite them to participate in the referendum?

This is not actually a vote on the TPPA, nor is it a petition for a Citizens Initiated Referendum. It is us attempting to reach the widest possible group of voters, in a step back from direct action to allow us to build a bigger support group before the next phase, which we’ll announce with the referendum results. With our mandate and support base as wide as possible, we’re hoping to be able to do something awesome next.

Thanks for your support,
Ben and the rest of the Real Choice Crew

For further information go to It’s Our Future’s website here:

http://itsourfuture.org.nz/news/

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