TPPA Twitter Storm tomorrow SAY NO TO INVESTORS’ RIGHTS TO SUE!
The NZ-South Korea FTA will go before Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee on 30 April 2015, where they will discuss whether foreign investors should have the right to sue the NZ government when we change our laws.
Join our Twitter Storm, and send the members of that committee each a tweet telling them to reject ‘investor-state dispute settlement’ provisions in the NZ-Korea deal, in the TPPA, or any other agreement! Include the hashtags #TPPANoDeal and #TPPANoWay and @ItsOurFutureNZ will retweet!
Select Committee members are @MarkMitchellMP, @DrShaneRetiMP, @DavidBennettMP, @phil_goff, @KennedyGraham, @jamileeross, @DavidShearerMP, @TabuteauNZFirst (and throw in @johnkeypm and @AndrewLittleMP for good measure!)
Timezones:NZ-time: 30 April @ 12pmEast Aus: 30 April @ 10amJapan: 30 April @ 9amWest Aus, Malaysia, Singapore: 30 April @ 8amEast Daily Time: 29 April @ 8pmCentral Daily Time: 29 April @ 7pmMountain Daily Time: 29 April @ 6pmPacific US: 29 April @ 5pm
Unite to represent Amanda Bailey28 April 2015
Source: Unite UnionUnite Union has agreed to represent Amanda Bailey, the waitress at the centre of the repeated harassment involving the Prime Minister.Amanda Bailey has sought support from Unite after being named as the author of an anonymous story for the Daily Blog last week describing how the Prime Minister had repeatedly pulled her ponytail over a period of months.Unite will be advising Amanda on employment issues and assisting to resolve concerns about how her identity was revealed by the New Zealand Herald.Amanda doesn’t wish to be interviewed and has stated that her two posts on the Daily Blog have documented her side of the story.
Pokie takings down
Less money was spent on pub and club pokies in the first three months of 2015 compared with the last quarter of 2014, according to figures compiled by the Department of Internal Affairs.
Spending dropped from $210.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2014 to $193.2 million in the first quarter of 2015. This drop in spending between the fourth and first quarters of calendar years is in line with annual trends.
Non-casino GM spending by Society Type – January – March 2015
Total GMP Quarter
% of Total
The spending is captured through the electronic monitoring of non-casino gaming machines (EMS), which became fully operational in March 2007, enabling the Department to track and monitor operations, ensure the integrity of games and the accurate accounting of money. Licence holders between Q4 2014 and Q1 2015 were static at 312, venues declined from 1287 to 1277 and the number of gaming machines decreased from 16,717 to 16,614.
Further information, including numbers of venues, machines and expenditure by territorial authority and changes in the quarter, is available from the Department’s Gaming Statistics web page. The figures are based on territorial authority boundaries, including Auckland City.
Canterbury in top one percent in the world in civil and structural engineering
April 29, 2013
The University of Canterbury is ranked in the top one percent in the world in civil and structural engineering in the latest QS world university rankings by subject released today.
The latest rating by the independent London-based university ranking company puts the University of Canterbury 44th in the world.
The university’s Civil and Natural Resources Engineering department has a long tradition of research into innovative solutions for many hazards facing society today, driven in part by the particular needs of living in New Zealand. The department is especially well regarded internationally for its research into seismic engineering.
Professors Andy Buchanan and Stefano Pampanin and Associate Professor Alessandro Palermo have developed a completely new system of earthquake-resistant buildings using post-tensioned structural timber. They have simulated some of the world’s shakiest earthquakes in a ground-breaking quest to design fully quake-proof buildings.
Canterbury is also ranked among the world’s elite 100 universities in the world in art and design, accounting and finance and law. Overall Canterbury is ranked among the top 200 universities in the world in 21 subjects.
Linguistics, in the top 15 universities, economics and sociology, in the top 200, and chemistry, in the top 250, made the greatest improvements at Canterbury in the last year, according to QS.
In its report, QS says UC enjoys an international reputation as a university that has a distinguished heritage, embraces and extols traditional values of academic excellence and takes singular pride in its strong research culture.
“The University has an impressive profile in research, learning and advanced scholarship as is evidenced by its strong performance in recent performance-based research fund exercises. This fuels the University’s resolve to continue with strong contributions to fundamental and applied research, with well-regarded postgraduate and research programmes and with strong research and collaborative links with other leading tertiary institutions and research organisations, nationally and internationally.
“The University of Canterbury’s overarching goal is to be among the top two universities in New Zealand over the long-term, reach standards equivalent to comparable Australian universities in research, teaching and learning and secure and maintain a ranking in the top 150 universities worldwide.’’
Overall, Canterbury is ranked among the top three percent of universities in the world and is the first New Zealand university to gain a five star QS rating.
Sam Johnson heading to Nepal to assist in aid work after the fatal Himalayan earthquake
April 28, 2015
University of Canterbury’s Sam Johnson, who led the Student Volunteer Army after the Christchurch earthquakes, flies to Nepal tonight to assist in the urgent aid work after Saturday’s 7.8 fatal earthquake.
This is following a string of international work Johnson and a wider international team have been involved with including the United Nations Strategy for Disasters in the last year.
More than 3200 people are dead and tens of thousands are in shock, sleeping in the streets in villages in the Himalayan nation. Johnson says he accepted an urgent invitation to go to Kathmandu on behalf of the Student Volunteer Army from the Global Peace Foundation and Nepalese Ministry of Youth who work closely with the Asia Pacific Peace and Development Service Alliance. Johnson is a co-chair of the alliance.
“We will be working with the Nepalese people if offering support and strategies. I have been briefed on the best ways to work in Nepal by Nepalese community leaders here in Christchurch and other disaster responders in New Zealand.
“We will help train local youth leaders who attended our Alliance conference in Nepal last month on mobilising volunteers for disaster response.
“We will share with government and youth leaders our methods and skills for engaging youth, specifically with their Minister of Youth and his networks who have reached out for support. I hope to meet the minister during my visit.
“The team on the ground hopes to will establish a Student Volunteer Army or another appropriately named group to serve as a youth driven distribution network to assist aid agencies with their important work. I am confident we can have a positive impact given the support received already and indication from locals that this would be helpful.
“After the earthquakes we worked closely with the New Zealand Government in setting up a youth volunteer army to support low risk projects. We knocked on doors, helped elderly clean up their homes and offered moral support. We mobilised 11,000 young people and got to work in the clean up on the streets and suburbs.
“We have about 50 young people in our network in Nepal who have been asking for advice on what to do, together with the large international community wanting to help. We are willing and able to do whatever is needed, provided its safe and we take care of the volunteers,” Johnson says.
The University of Canterbury’s Student Volunteer Army is helping with the Nepal New Zealand Friendship Society’s fundraising effort for Nepal and they have already raised thousands of dollars for the campaign. See: https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/nz4nepal#<https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/nz4nepal>.