Free Speech Coalition
Jordan Williams 

The Free Speech Coalition supports Human Rights Commissioner Prof Paul Hunt, engaging with all New Zealanders, including Mongrel Mob gangsters, but is calling out his comments that it would be a ‘dereliction of duty’ to turn down invitations to speak about rights – given his blanket refusal to speak to pro-free speech groups.

Spokesman for the Free Speech Coalition, Dr David Cumin says “In 2017 the Human Rights Commission sought a form of ‘hate speech’ laws for New Zealand in a submission to the United Nations. Last year they completed a large consultation on law changes. The Free Speech Coalition asked to be a part of the process, but Chief Commissioner, Paul Hunt, refused to meet on the basis that the Commission was only interested in ‘victims’ of hate speech.”

“Not only does that ignore the fact that many of our supporters – and indeed volunteers on our steering group – identify as members of minority groups, but it shows an unwillingness to engage with a diverse range of viewpoints. That’s not how consultation should work.”

“Furthermore, the Free Speech Coalition runs New Zealand’s most popular podcast series examining free speech and human rights. But Prof Hunt and the Human Rights Commission refuse to front.”

“Why would the Chief Human Rights Commissioner accept an invite to talk with gangs but not to speak with advocates of a human right?”

“As Prof Hunt pointed out to Radio NZ last night, human rights is a ‘package’.  As Chief Commissioner, he should be talking to everyone – not just gangs and those who support his worldview.”

“The invitation is open and we hope he will join us for a discussion of free speech in Aotearoa New Zealand.”

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Human Rights Commissioner Will Speak with Mongrel Mob but Not Free Speech Coalition

Press Release

This article is a press release that has been published in full and un-edited by The BFD.