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Salient: Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 28, No. 3. 1965.

Student Viewpoint From Congress

page 8

Student Viewpoint From Congress

The recent retirement of Dr. W. B. Sutch, Secretary of the Department of Industries and Commerce, was noted and criticised at Congress. A motion was passed noting student concern for their own futures as potential members of the Public Service, and stressing the need for creative and intelligent persons at all levels of the Public Service.

The motion, passed by an overwhelming majority, said:

That this Congress, convinced of the desirability of creative and intelligent persons at all levels of the public Service, condemns the compulsory retirement of the Permanent Head of the Department of Industries and Commerce by the State Services Commission acting on the advice of the Government without right of appeal and considers that this action threatens the intellectual freedom of the Public Service and the careers of members of integrity within it.

Other Congress motions included:

That NZUSA recommends that the Government do immediately establish a formal and independent body for the purpose of economic planning.

That this Congress being aware of the low rate of growth of productivity in the NZ economy presses Government:

(i)To institute forms of indicative democratic planning in sectors of the economy other than agricultural:
(ii)To establish institutions of workers, employees, academics and government to conduct the processes of indicative planning;
(iii)To encourage by all possible means the study of factors leading to increasing productivity in individual unity of the economy.

That we recommended to each Students' Association that they take practical steps to discover the size of racial discrimination in accommodation of university students, and that they extensively publish these results.

The NZUSA press for the implementation of the Education Commission's recommendation that Teachers' colleges should be attached to the Universities.

That the forum of Congress urges NZUSA to press for the cause of a third year teacher training course.

That NZUSA press for the raising of the minimum entrance to teacher colleges to the same standard as the University.

That NZUSA promote a Conference among interested parties on the structure, course content, and other related matters of secondary and tertiary educational institutions.

That NZUSA recommends the Government that closing times of public bars be changed to 10pm.

That this Congress does strongly recommended that New Zealand students ought to organise activities such as austerity meals, aimed at raising funds from among students for the Freedom From Hunger Campaign, Volunteer Service Abroad, or some similar aid schemes on the following grounds besides the usual humanitarian ones.

(i)That actions speak louder than words in that the Government is more likely to increase its overseas aid, if pressure groups show their concern in such practical ways.
(ii)That it is important that the voting public of New Zealand does appreciate the importance of such activities as the FFHC and similar aid schemes and that as students we have a great potentiality for influencing public opinion later when out working in the community, and it is vital that we should have an active interest in these problems and the activities aimed at their solution.

That abortion be regarded as a normal surgical operation and be not illegal.

That homosexual acts be legalised between adult consenting males in private.

That the Forum of the 1965 NZUSA Congress realising that prehistoric Maori sites constitute a vital part of our cultural and social heritage.

Nothing with concern the increasing numbers of these sites that are being destroyed by various types of constructions and that the proposed power constructions at Turangi and on the Wanganui River will destroy many important sites:

Expresses its support for the efforts of the New Zealand Archaeological Association and the New Zealand Historic Places Trust to schedule important sites for preservation or investigation before destruction.

And resolves:

(a)That the Congress Controller write to the Minister of Works and the Electricity Department expressing our concern at the destruction of sites and urging that provisions be made in the budgeting for the Turangi, Wanganui River and similar schemes to include provision for the employment of professional archaeologists who should be provided with sufficient facilities and time to adequately investigate all the threatened sites.
(b)That copies of these letters be sent to the Leader of the Operation, to the NZPA, to the NZ Archaeological Association and to the Historic Places Trust.
(c)That NZUSA Easter Council be requested to support this remit and to voice any expression of its support that it deems desirable.

That NZUSA circulate constituent universities to the effect that they refuse to contribute funds towards sending payers to the NZU Rugby team to play the touring Springbok team and ask constituents to use every method including disaffiliation to prevent members attending receptions for the teams.

That the NZ Government cease CMT in any form.

That this Congress bearing in mind that the 1954 and 1961 Geneva accords on Indo-China are no longer observed and that wide scale violence continues to occur in the Republic of Vietnam and the Kingdom of Laos and recognising that the continuation of the present tendencies threatens the peace of the whole of South-East Asian area; reaffirms its beliefs in the rights of the people of Vietnam and Laos to self-determination and freedom from political and military coercion; and calls on the NZ Government to welcome the initiative of General de Gaulle in proposing the neutralising of Vietnam (North and South) and Laos and to furthermore declare Vietnam and Laos to be arms free zones.

That Congress reaffirms its views that New Zealand withdraw from SEATO and the ANZUS pacts which could involve her in nuclear war.

That this Congress requests next year's Congress Committee to arrange for the Director of the New Zealand Security Service to address the 1966 Congre on New Zealand problem and policy toward internal security.

That Congress recommend that for Congress next year a lecturer be invited to discuss the case for South Africa by New Zealand in association with the other nations, and the case for supporting a full blockade of South Africa under appropriate international authority, with the purpose of reversing the policy of apartheid.

That in the case of Lecturer invited to address Congress, the wives or husbands as the case may be of such lecturers be invited also, and the full accommodation costs of the lecturers' wives or husbands be met by NZUSA.

Forum is one of those notable traditions of Congress that develops as time goes on. This year the Congress Committee decided to double the time devoted to the discussion held at Forum, and arranged for two full sessions of it. At Forum, students propose motions of their own choosing, and after what are often lengthy debates the motions are put to the vote Motions passed will be taken to NZUSA Easter Council for ratification, not an automatic procedure. In the past, motions have lapsed at Council for want of a seconder, others have been defeated by the votes of delegations from each of the constituents' Universities. (NZSPA).