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The Campaign to Pardon Gays in Aotearoa
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Public Submissions to Select Committee

petition presented to Parliament
Photo by Parliament TV, used under fair use
On 6 July 2016, the petition organised by the Campaign to Pardon Gays in Aotearoa was submitted to Parliament by MP Kevin Hague. The petition calls for two related actions:
Since the petition has been presented to Parliament, it is no longer possible to sign the petition. Furthermore, submissions have closed for Select Committee. We would like to extend our deepest appreciation to those who made submissions.

Questions and Answers

Where can I read submissions made to Select Committee?

You can read some of the submissions made to Select Committee here.

How does the Select Committee relate to the Parliamentary process?

New Zealand Parliament Buildings
Photo by Alexander Efimov, license details
After the petition was presented in Parliament, it was refered to a Select Committee as allocated by the Clerk of the House. The function of the Select Committee is to consider the issues surrounding the requests of the petition, and make formal recommendations to Parliament concerning what happens next.

The Select Committee stage is therefore an important stage in the life of any proposed legislation. Select Committees often solicit evidence in the form of submissions from experts and the general public, to allow for the full consideration of the issues involved.

In the case of this petition, by soliciting submissions from members of the public, the Select Committee has indicated that it considers the pardoning of men convicted of homosexuality to be important and worthy of serious consideration.

Has the Campaign made a submission to Select Committee?

The Campaign was invited to make a submission to the Select Committee prior to the opening of submissions to the public. The written submission made by the Campaign can be found here. This was followed by an oral presentation to the Committee.

Does the Campaign believe that the Select Committee is acting in good faith?

The Campaign believes that the Select Committee has approached this issue in good-faith, and has indicated its good-faith by choosing to solicit feedback from the public. We ask submitters to take this into account when writing their submissions.

Another issue relates to the method used to find cases to examine. The method prefered by the Campaign is one in which the government proactive checks criminal cases to find cases to pardon. This is in contrast to the approach of waiting for individuals to apply to be pardoned before examining their case. The Campain prefers the proactive approach, because it would allow for an across-the-board correcting of the record, which would be beneficial for rainbow communities, and would also allow for a clearer historical record of wrongs perpetrated against the gay community.

Finally, you may wish to indicate that you support both a pardoning process and a proceeding formal apology. The process proposed by the Campaign and formalised in the petition is a two step process: first, an apology, and then a case-by-case pardoning.

Where can I read more about the background of this issue?

National Library of New Zealand, Wellington
Photo by Pear285 of Wikimedia Commons, license details
If you wish to learn more about the background of this issue, here are a few places that may be of interest. Please note that these sites are provided in the hope that they are useful, but the Campaign does not endorse them or vouch for their accuracy. To learn more about the more recent efforts of the Campaign to Pardon Gays in Aotearoa, you may find the list of news items useful.

When did submissions close?

Submissions to Select Committee closed on 6 October 2016.
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