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‘I want a job’ Finlayson told at fiery meeting

Nov 11th, 2011 | By | Category: Latest News, News

WHAT Bronwyn Hayward lacks in size – she’s 1.27 metres tall – she makes up for in spirit.

Bronwyn came to Newtown’s “meet the candidates” meeting to protest against welfare reform under National’s Welfare Working Groups, citing a lack of transparency in the panel as a cause for concern.

During the question and answer session, her fiery exchange with Chris Finlayson – see VIDEO above – left no doubt as to her passion surrounding the issue: “I sold everything I had before I even considered going on the f..king benefit!

“I want to know who’s on this workability panel, who are these ‘unknown experts,” she asked.

An article outlining her cause was featured in The Dominion Post on Saturday, October 29, but she said she felt she needed to come and ask in person to get answers.

“I’m frustrated at the lack of visibility of people with disabilities and felt like I needed to stick up [for other people with disabilities],” she said.

“After the British model [was instigated] suicide rose,” she said.

When question and answer time came she directed her question to National candidate and Attorney-General Chris Finlayson.

She first outlined her case, saying that high levels of unemployment have led to greater competition for jobs.

While she looks great on a CV, Ms Hayward said that when she turns up for an interview and employers see her disability she’s rejected in favour of able-bodied workers.

“We’re twenty percent of the population, and we vote,” she warned.

Her questions for Mr Finlayson were:

  • What were the qualifications, and who were the experts who determined you had sufficient skills and abilities to stand for Parliament?
  • Who are the unknown experts who are going to tell me about my life and your expectations of it?

Mr Finlayson responded that while he couldn’t comment on people’s individual circumstances and isn’t qualified to do so, he will take her case up with the Minister of Social Development (Paula Bennett).

“I would have thought in the first instance that would have breached the Human Rights Act,” he said, then adding that it was the National Party who determined his job-worthiness.

After the meeting Mr Finlayson said it is an issue that goes beyond the welfare working group into some possible discrimination that she may have suffered over a period of time.

But he vowed to “get to the heart of it and see what the problem is. I’m personally going to look into that for her.”

Newtown resident Mouhiddia Abadi admired Ms Hayward’s style: “She’s the most relaxed I’ve ever seen anyone ask a MP a question.”

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