Listen back to features and interviews from 95bFM's daily news & current affairs show, The Wire. Your hosts Sherry Zhang, Justin Wong Mary-Margaret Slack, Lillian Hanly, and Laura Kvigstad focus on the issues of Tāmaki Makaurau and elsewhere, in independent-thinking bFM style. Weekdays 12-1pm on 95bFM.
The National Party's workplace relations and safety spokesperson Dan Bidios has made a call that 90 Day Trials should be fully reinstated to give employers more confidence in hiring following the economic fall out of Covid-19. Jemima speaks to Dan Bidois and E Tū Union's National Industrial Officer, Paul Tolich, about 90 Day Trials and whether a full reinstatement of the scheme is in the best interests of the employer and the employee.
With crews for Avatar 2 arriving in New Zealand earlier this week, it’s worth looking back at the government’s complicated relationship with Hollywood and the bill that’s currently going through parliament. Felix Walton gave a little bit of a rundown.
On the 25th May George Floyd was murdered by a police officer in America. Another in a long line of police murders in which Black people are systematically targeted - demonized, you could say, since deliberate racist and genocidal actions deemed an entire nation as less than human.
Two days later here in Aotearoa, MP Judith Collins said she was 'sick of being demonised for her ethnicity'.
What does it actually mean to be demonised for your ethnicity? And how are white supremacy, white privilege, white violence and white fragility at play here?
Lillian Hanly takes us through some of these issues.
Justin Wong spoke to former National MP and head of the government's Safe and Effective Justice Advisory Group Chester Borrows about the Armed Police trials, after Radio New Zealand and Newshub found it did not consult Maori and were not used to tackle seious crime.
Internet NZ’s chief executive, Jordan Carter joined Laura Kvigstad to discuss the recent bill from the government to create a legal framework to censor objectionable material online. Carter explains the good and the bad in the bill from his perspective.
This week, Mary-Margaret and Andrew discussed the proposed rewriting of the Official Information Act, the extension of the role of Children’s Commissioner to monitor the treatment of children in secure detention centres, and whether or not advocacy by an American lobby group is ‘interference in another country's electoral process'.
Lillian speaks to the Minister about two government announcements from yesterday, the first being an extension of temporary working visas, and the second being a hold on incoming flights to the country. They also touched on a tool the Minister has been working on during her time in government. Just for some more information around the visa extensions, given this is not Martin’s portfolio she indicated she may not have all the details. Minister Iain Lees-Galloway announced yesterday that the Government is "making immediate short-term changes to visa settings to support temporary migrants already onshore in New Zealand and their employers, while also ensuring New Zealanders needing work are prioritised".
So this means,
- Extending all existing employer-assisted temporary work visas for people in New Zealand and whose visas are due to expire before the end of 2020 by six months, benefiting around 16,500 workers
- Shifting the stand down by 6 months to February 2021. So this affects migrant workers who are subject to the 12 month stand-down period and were going to have to leave New Zealand this year will now be able to stay for the duration of the extension, and that affects 600 workers. The stand-down period being the amount of time one has to leave the country before applying to come back and work. The government states that, The stand-down period was introduced in 2017 to prevent lower-skilled, lower-paid foreign workers from becoming well settled in New Zealand without a pathway to residence. Just a note here because of the way in which lower-skilled as a term has negative connotations, the Government is continuing to work on a number of changes, which were announced pre-COVID-19. These changes include a different way to define lower-skilled/lower-paid employment and a new process for employer-assisted work visas expected to be fully in place by mid-2021.
- Finally, the last part of the announcement was ensuring New Zealanders needing work continue to be prioritised.
So back to Tracey Martin, Lillian started by asking her how this will work.
EDIT: Minister Iain Lees-Galloway's response 08/07/2020:
“Temporary work visas are there to fill temporary gaps in the labour market and that is clear when people apply for temporary visas. Work to residency is only available for more skilled jobs where there is a longer term skills shortage.
“The extension to visas announced yesterday is to give people breathing space to work out what is best for them. The New Zealand labour market is changing as more New Zealanders lose their jobs and as always, immigration is there to fill the gaps in our labour market. As the gaps close, there may be fewer opportunities for temporary migrant workers.
“We value the contribution our migrant communities make to New Zealand and it’s great that many do become residents and citizens. However, like in most countries around the world, temporary immigration is for temporary work opportunities. That’s a choice people make for themselves.
[on the low-skilled issue] “Last year we introduced changes to the employer assisted temporary work visas that includes introducing the use of pay rates as a proxy for skills. In the vast majority of cases higher skilled roles are paid above the median wage so the median wage is being used to assess the skill level, instead of complicated skills assessments under ANZCO.”
On Dear Science today with Marcus Jones we touch back on some coronavirus news, we also hear about some concerns being raised about scientists collecting DNA in China, and lastly, scientists are moving to strip offensive names and terms from reports and prizes.
The world is facing multiple crises from climate change to institutional racism to COVOD-19. Maria Armoudian speaks to three preeminent scholars from the fields of anthropology, philosophy, and psychology about the crossroads we are facing as a global community and the ways we can navigate them for the betterment of humanity.
For more stories like these head to www.thebigq.org
On today's Southern Cross, Pacific Media Centre director David Robie, reflecting on his experience as a journalist on Rainbow Warrior, we follow up on domestic violence in PNG, and journalism in West Papua.
This week Sherry Zhang talks to Green Party co-leader James Shaw, on the Electoral Integrity Amendment Act. This means members of parliament can’t change political parties once they enter parliament, and party leader are able to kick out MP's if they reasonably believe they disproportionately affect the proportion of parliament.
One of the most fundamental features of the Trump Administration is a policy of limiting immigration and reversing previous US policy on work visas, asylum, and deportation. Will Trump continue to limit immigration in light of recent US Supreme Court decisions and the Covid-19 Pandemic? Doug Becker speaks with Peter J. Spiro and Hiroshi Motomura.
For more stories like this head to www.thebigq.org