“New Zealand hasn’t raised our refugee quota since David Lange was Prime Minister, Mr Peters was his party’s Race Relations spokesperson and I was the World Squash champion: times have changed a lot since 1987, it’s time to raise the quota,” said Dame Susan.
“How can we play our part on the world stage if we don’t do the right thing at home? Raising the refugee quota is humanity in action.”
“We have millions of displaced people in the world – most of them children. This is New Zealand’s opportunity to lead by example as a Security Council member: We must play our part as a responsible, humane global citizen.”
“For a country that’s renowned for punching above our weight on the world stage: when it comes to taking in refugees we lag behind the rest of the world.”
Dame Susan said change depends primarily on the will of everyday people: which is why everyday Kiwis need to take a stand and call for a rise in New Zealand’s refugee quota.
“Most of us will never know what it’s like to flee our home, never knowing if we will see our loved ones again. Most of us will never know what it’s like to survive a war in our own homeland, or put our lives on hold as we wait for another country to give us a new home,” said Dame Susan.
“My plea is for Kiwis to start punching above our weight not just in sport: New Zealanders need to start punching above our weight when it comes to compassion, kindness and most of all, humanity.”
Watch Dame Susan Devoy talk about the refugee quota and other issues relating to race relations in New Zealand in an interview on 'The Nation'.