2112 signatures received.
The Campaign to Pardon Gays in Aotearoa
Last updated 8 August 2017
On 6 July 2017, the New Zealand House of Representatives formally apologised
for the past convictions of men for consensual homosexual acts. This is an
important step towards reconciliation, and one of the remedies requested
by the petition organised by the Campaign to Pardon Gays in Aotearoa.
Click here to learn more about the apology and watch
the raw footage of the proceedings in Parliament.
At this stage, a Bill to put in place a process for issuing pardons to men
unjustly convicted has been referred to the Justice and Electoral Select Committee. Public submissions are
currently being accepted regarding the Bill. The submission process will be open until Friday 18 August 2017.
Click here to learn more about the submission process.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I support the aims of the petition?
Thanks to the past support of many, the first aim of the campaign has been realised: a formal apology in Parliament
The second aim, that of having a process for men to be pardoned (see below for more details), is still in the works. A Bill
has been recently introduced by the Government which addresses this second aim. You can assist the campaign by making a
submission to the Justice and Electoral Select Committee; click here for details
submissions close on 18 August 2017.
What does the petition call for?
The petition is aimed at getting Parliament to work toward reconcilliation with the gay community. It calls for two related actions:
- An official apology to be issued for the systematic persecution of gays in New Zealand. This would be on behalf of all New Zealanders, but would have special significance since the basis for the prosecution of gays by the criminal justice system were Acts of Parliament.
- A process to be put in place to pardon gay men. The specifics of the process are not specified, because there are a number of technical details that would need to be considered.
The petition only requests a pardon for men convicted of homosexual acts which are now legal
. Convictions for homosexual acts with minors should remain on the books, and a pardon for those convictions is not requested by the petition. Only consensual acts should be pardoned.
How can I sign the petition?
The submission has been submitted to Parliament, and, therefore, it can no longer be signed. Many thanks
to those who signed the petition and collected singatures.
How many people would be eligble for pardon?
Exact numbers are hard to come by, due to the classification system used to tally convictions.
Information obtained through an Official Information Act request suggests the total is at least 400. While obtaining
this estimate, filters were applied to the data to try to remove convictions that we aren't asking for pardons
on (see What does the petition call for?
Other sources have suggested the number could be considerably higher, perhaps closer to 1000.
Not all of the eligible men would still be living. However, most of the convictions were handed down in the last decades
before the 1986 reform, so it is likely that most of the men who would be eligble for pardon would still be living. The
Campaign has asked for a pardoning process to be available for those eligible men who are deceased.
Is this campaign related to the one launched in the United Kingdom?
While on a similar subject matter, this campaign is not affliated with
the similar one in the United Kingdom
New Zealand has its own history with this issue, and it is important to recognise the differences therein, as well as
the cultural differences found today.
Media enquiries to: Wiremu Demchick, 021 292 3891, email@example.com
Except where noted: Copyright © 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 Wiremu Stadtwald Demchick,