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Human Rights Commission calls for new Government to 'honour human rights and Te Tiriti'

The Human Rights Commission is calling for the Government to "honour human rights and Te Tiriti o Waitangi" - laying out 39 issues it wants the Government to adopt. 

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Chief Human Rights Commissioner Paul Hunt told Breakfast the first step is warm, dry, decent homes. Source: Breakfast

"With a new Government being formed, it is important politicians are asked how they will keep decades-old promises," Chief Commissioner Paul Hunt said. 

One of the issues was to create a written Constitution that honours Te Tiriti o Waitangi "to "help us build a vibrant inclusive democracy which protects everyone’s human rights", Hunt said.

He also said the current laws around hate speech "does not safeguard other protected characteristics such as religion, sexual orientation or disability".

Race Relations Commissioner Meng Foon continued to call for the collection of hate crime data by Government and police. 

"The motivation for the offence is not recorded and reported on," he said. "This misses the opportunity to understand the nature and scale of hate-motivated crime and design evidence-based policies in response."

He also called for a national action plan against racism, the teaching of Te Tiriti o Waitangi, local histories and human rights in schools and a public anniversary to commemorate the New Zealand Wars. 

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero said there needed to be better employment opportunities for disabled people.

"A range of things are needed to grow equal employment opportunities for disabled people such as internships, mentoring, inclusive workplaces and better awareness that disabled people have great skills," she said.