Maryan Street

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The Honourable
Maryan Street
MP
Maryan Street, 2012.jpg
Maryan Street in 2012
Minister of Housing
In office
31 October 2007 – 3 October 2008
Prime Minister Helen Clark
Preceded by Chris Carter
Succeeded by Phil Heatley
Minister for ACC
In office
31 October 2007 – 3 October 2008
Prime Minister Helen Clark
Preceded by Ruth Dyson
Succeeded by Nick Smith
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for Labour Party List
Incumbent
Assumed office
17 September 2005
Personal details
Born (1955-04-05) 5 April 1955 (age 59)
New Plymouth
Nationality New Zealand
Political party Labour Party
Domestic partner Kathryn Street

Maryan Street (born 5 April 1955) was a Member of the New Zealand Parliament (MP) for the New Zealand Labour Party. In the 2005 elections, she became the first openly lesbian MP elected to the Parliament of New Zealand.[1] She failed to get re-elected in the 2014 election.

Early years[edit]

Street was born and raised in New Plymouth, and studied at Victoria University of Wellington. She joined the Labour Party in 1984, and was President of the Labour Party from 1995 until 1997. She was later appointed Director of Labour Studies at Auckland University, and also served on the board of a number of governmental bodies. Street was Co-Chair of the Rainbow Labour Sector Council within the Labour Party in 2004-05.

Member of Parliament[edit]

Parliament of New Zealand
Years Term Electorate List Party
2005–2008 48th List 36 Labour
2008–2011 49th List 9 Labour
2011–2014 50th List 7 Labour

In the 2005 elections, Street was ranked thirty-sixth on its party list. This was the second highest position given by Labour in 2005 to a person who was not already a member of Parliament. She also contested the safe National seat of Taranaki-King Country against the incumbent National Party MP, Shane Ardern. Street was elected to parliament as a list MP.

In 2006, Street's Residential Tenancies (Damage Insurance) Amendment Bill was drawn from the member's ballot.[2] It passed its first reading, but was subsequently discharged after the Social Services Committee recommended that it not be passed.[3] Street subsequently promoted a bill promoting ethical investment by crown financial institutions.[4]

In the Cabinet re-shuffle on 31 October 2007, Street was made a Cabinet Minister with the portfolios of Housing and ACC, and was made an Associate Minister of Tertiary Education and Economic Development.

In the lead up to the 2008 general election, Street was highly placed on the party's list, at nine. She also unsuccessfully contested the Nelson electorate. Labour was defeated in the election but Street was returned to parliament due to her list placing.

In July 2009 Street introduced a Member's Bill which would prohibit the import of goods produced by slave labour,[5] but the bill failed to pass its first reading.[6]

On 15 June 2010, Opposition Leader Phil Goff appointed Street to be Portfolio Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs, a position formerly held by Chris Carter. She was appointed the Health Spokesperson in 2012, and switched to the Environment portfolio in 2013.

Street has sought to introduce a Member's Bill to Parliament (the End of Life Choice Bill[7]) which would allow those terminally ill to choose when to die, and to be able to receive medical support to do so under certain circumstances. It has been called a "euthanasia bill" by some,[8] although this word is not present in the text of the Bill itself. Street has said "It would only apply to people who were of sound mind and suffered from a terminal illness, or an irreversible condition which made their life unbearable, in their own view".[9] It also includes the need for two medical practitioners to attest that the person is of sound mind, has the condition the person says he or she has, and has not been coerced into the decision; the need for counselling and a period of reflection; and a Review Body to examine the law after a period of time to ensure it is not being abused and is operating correctly. The Bill is not yet formally before Parliament however, because, as is the case for all Members' Bills in the New Zealand Parliament, it must be drawn out of the Members' Bills ballot first.

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Ruth Dyson
Labour Party President
1993–1995
Succeeded by
Michael Hirschfeld
Political offices
Preceded by
Chris Carter
Minister of Housing
2007–2008
Succeeded by
Phil Heatley
Preceded by
Ruth Dyson
Minister for ACC
2007–2008
Succeeded by
Nick Smith