New Zealand First MP
Sport is inextricably linked to our national and cultural identity as New Zealanders, and we have a once-in-a-generation chance to let the big money fear mongers know we are standing up to claim our birth right.
We already invest $960 million per annum of taxpayer money into sports and recreation in New Zealand. But when it comes to the pinnacle of sport, we either fork out $1000 a year for a pay-TV subscription, or it's ‘too bad, how sad' and ‘read about it tomorrow'.
At New Zealand First, we have drawn a line in the sand to say enough is enough. If we're going to pay for it at the grassroots, we should have access at the top too.
And we're not alone. Australia, the United Kingdom and Canada already require live and free-to-air access to ‘Games of National Significance' for their citizens, because they know – and can prove – the benefits are priceless.
Participation in sport builds character, develops discipline, fosters teamwork, builds self-confidence, lowers incidence of obesity and other health problems. The list goes on. Don't we want our kids outside and active? Of course we do.
A child with local sporting heroes believes that he or she has the potential to do great things too. The idea that: ‘If I can see it, I can be it' only works if ‘I can see it'.
There are a number of ways this policy can work, and we look forward to getting into the ‘how' once it's in select committee for discussion and public submissions. But today we need to make our voices heard. We want free live sport now!
So write to, call, tweet, post, and door-knock your local MP and let them know this Broadcasting (Games of National Significance) Amendment Bill is something New Zealanders want.