Grey Power (New Zealand)

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Grey Power is a New Zealand based lobby group formed to promote the interests of people over the age of 50.

History[edit]

Grey Power was formed around 1988[1] by superannuitants protesting against the New Zealand Government's proposed plan to apply a surcharge on the New Zealand pension. The group was originally based only in Auckland and were known as the Auckland Superannuitants Association. The media attention which their meetings gathered raised awareness of the group and similar organisations formed in other areas. This led to the creation of the Grey Power New Zealand Federation. The scope of the organisation has since changed and the group are now involved with any matter concerning those over 50, such as health care and subsidies.[2]

Policies[edit]

Grey Power lobbies for a tax-funded superannuation to be given to every New Zealander starting at the age of 65. Grey Power believe the payment should not be means tested but should include provisions for those living alone. This policy caused the group to oppose suggestions by the Retirement Commissioner to increase the superannuation age[3] and led National Party leader John Key to promise to "resign as Prime Minister" if he lowered the amount while elected.[4] Grey Power are also actively opposed to the sale of state owned enterprises and have vocally opposed any political party suggesting the idea.[5] They also lobby for better health care and a stronger but fairer justice system.[6]

Grey Power have also opposed other political matters not strictly related to their policies, such as child discipline. Before it was passed into law Grey power were concerned about the effect of the Crimes (Substituted Section 59) Amendment Act 2007 on parents and caregivers.[7]

Influence[edit]

Grey Power are billed as the "voice of the over 50s"[8] and have successfully lobbied for improved driver licensing schemes for elderly people, a rates rebate scheme and improved health care.[9] Grey Power has a large influence in New Zealand due to the significant number of people who are over 60.[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Grey Power New Zealand - representing the over 50s". Grey Power. Retrieved 2008-08-12. ... founded some 20 years ago ... 
  2. ^ "Representing the over 50s". Grey Power. Retrieved 2008-08-12. 
  3. ^ "Increasing super age 'needs to be debated'". New Zealand Herald. 2007-12-19. Retrieved 2008-08-12. 
  4. ^ "Key pledges not to cut super if he becomes PM". New Zealand Herald. 2008-04-23. Retrieved 2008-08-12. 
  5. ^ "Forget plan to sell assets, Grey Power tells National". New Zealand Herald. 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2008-08-12. 
  6. ^ "Grey Power Policy Summary". Grey Power. Retrieved 2008-08-12. 
  7. ^ "Elderly Concerned About Bradford's Bill". Scoop. 2007-03-20. Retrieved 2008-08-12. 
  8. ^ "About Us". About Us. Retrieved 2008-08-12. 
  9. ^ Helen Clark (2006-05-01). "PM's address to Grey Power's annual meeting". New Zealand Government. Retrieved 2008-08-12. 
  10. ^ "Grey Power won't bully us, says Brash". New Zealand Herald. 2005-07-15. Retrieved 2008-08-12. ... an intense interest in the elderly vote - which ... is becoming larger ... Close to 600,000 voters are 60 years and over. 

External links[edit]