Former New Zealand First candidate for Tauranga Erika Harvey is about to launch what she says is an innovative style of democracy starting right in the heart of Tauranga.
“My hope is that ‘Lobby for Good’ will become the first step to creating better policy and political engagement that is representative of everyday kiwis,” says Erika.
“The lobby industry in New Zealand is shrouded in secrecy with handshake deals done behind closed doors which should be of major concern to New Zealanders given the amount of influence most lobby groups have.
“In 2013, the Lobbying Disclosure Bill was introduced to Parliament, legislation that would have required lobbyists in New Zealand to register and abide by a code of conduct, however for various reasons, the Bill did not get past the first reading.
“Most kiwis are unaware of how to participate in lobbying, which means the way politicians end up making key decisions, is a reflection of what the most powerful lobbyists want, not the general public.
“This is where ‘Lobby for Good’ is going to shake things up because if we want to change the balance of power in politics, we first must enable people to actively participate and engage in political decision making.”
Erika says it’s been a long journey to set up Lobby for Good with a lot of her own personal time and resources invested to ensure a robust and ready platform.
Lobby for Good will hold an initial soft launch on today at 5.30pm at the Hop House with a small group of family, friends and early adopters where Erika will share more about her journey and vision.
There will be an official launch when the final online platform is ready before the 2023 election.
“Lobby for Good will be a powerhouse for the voices of everyday kiwis,” says Erika.