18 Nov 2011

Labour working to win back South Auckland Pacific vote

6:30 pm on 18 November 2011

The Labour Party says it is pulling out all stops to win back its heartland vote among Pacific communities.

A surge by South Auckland's mainly Pacific vote kept Labour in government in 2005 but the party suffered three years later when about 30,000 of those voters stayed home in protest at reforms of prostitution and child discipline laws.

The MP for Mangere, Su'a William Sio, says getting Pacific voters enrolled and out to vote is critical to Labour's chances.

He says it the South Auckland vote won Len Brown the Auckland mayoralty and Labour the elections back in 2005, and that's what they need to repeat.

Mr Sio says the hurt that Pacific families feel over the rising cost of living and lack of jobs will galvanise them to vote this time.

Labour's Auckland regional campaign manager Andrew Beyer says the party has worked hard to mend fences with Pacific churches and voters and expects a significant increase in the south Auckland vote.