2 Oct 2013

NZers encouraged to lobby Australian politicians for law changes

7:20 pm on 2 October 2013

A Maori business leader in Australia says New Zealand migrants need to start lobbying federal ministers if they want to change the laws that restrict New Zealanders from certain jobs and benefits.

A Maori rights movement in Australia - Iwi in Aus - is one group questioning the 2001 immigration laws that limit New Zealanders gaining Australian citizenship, voting rights, jobs in the government and defence force, and certain benefits.

Brent Reihana says Maori migrants need to start lobbying individual MPs who are sympathetic to their cause.

He says Maori leaders like Christel Broederlow were successful in changing laws in Queensland at a state government level, however it didn't change how the Federal Government in Canberra treats New Zealanders - which is the most important issue.

Mr Reihana says it must be done at a federal level not a state level.

He says it is also about pinpointing those federal ministers that have sympathy for New Zealanders and those MPs that can actually make a difference.