Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Veterans' Support Bill had its First Reading in the House on Tuesday night.    I can probably speak for many veterans when I thank the twelve speakers from all the major parties for their thoughtful and dignified contributions to the debate.

I would like to think that the veteran community has earned the right to have matters of concern to them considered in a bi-partisan manner always acknowledging that the Government of the day will have the final say.    One of the submissions to the Select Committee considering the Bill will discuss a mechanism to give effect to that.   

But the speech of the day would have to go to Melissa Lee.   You can view it here    I was powerful and received plaudits from across the chamber.   You can only imagine the effect on a young girl to know that her grandfather was shot by the North Koreans simply because he was 'educated'.    Just a pity that we have some motorbike riders from NZL with too much money and too much time on their hands prepared to don rose tinted spectacles and unable to recognise North Korea as a totalitarian state where dissent is ruthlessly suppressed.

But I repeat.   Thank you MPs for your cross-party support.   The veteran community expects that and deserves nothing less.

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