Key’s incredible u-turn on Pike River safety

Published: Tue 21 Jun 2011 12:54 PM
Labour Leader
Tuesday, 21 June 2011 MEDIA STATEMENT
Key’s incredible u-turn on Pike River safety
John Key’s sudden declaration that Pike River mine would have been illegal in Australia and his questioning of mining safety standards here is an unbelievable about-face, says Labour Leader Phil Goff.
In an interview with The Australian newspaper, John Key has reportedly said there are serious deficiencies in New Zealand’s mining safety regulations and that changes will need to be made in light of the Pike River disaster.
“These comments come despite John Key having previously said he had no reason to believe that our standards were any less than Australia’s.
“This sudden change in his position is quite incredible given just a month ago he publicly condemned a union representative for questioning safety at the mine, accusing her of being “churlish and insensitive”.
“He also said it was “dangerous” to raise concerns about safety issues when the Royal Commission of Inquiry was still underway. Yet he is now making similar claims himself while the Commission is still underway.
“What has changed? Does John Key have new information about safety standards that he hasn’t told New Zealanders about? Why is he happy to talk to an Australian newspaper about his concerns but not to Kiwis and the families of the men who died in this terrible tragedy?
“If John Key has new evidence about serious safety issues in our mines, he should take action now to address those concerns. If he doesn’t, he should wait for the Royal Commission to make its recommendations.”

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