Another batch of private member's bills currently in the ballot. Previous batches are indexed here.
Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion (Informed Consent) Amendment Bill (Gordon Copeland): I have little information on this, but according to Mr Copeland it "introduces Counselling into the process before a woman makes a final decision to request an abortion". Mr Copeland did not provide a copy of the bill (and the Clerk's Office will generally not provide the "fair copy" MPs are required to submit in case their bill is drawn), so exactly what such "counselling" will entail will have to be left to the imagination.
Education (Schools Review Authority) Amendment Bill (Sue Bradford): This would establish an independent body to review decisions by schools concerning stand-downs, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions. Currently, such decisions can be reviewed either by the High Court or by the Ombudsman, but neither is particularly accessible to parents or students. A specialist review body would solve that problem, and help ensure that students are treated fairly and that their right to education is upheld.
A full copy of the bill is here [PDF]. Note that this is actually being put forward on behalf of Metiria Turei's bill, who was clearly hoping to benefit from Sue's ballot mojo.
Human Tissue (Organ Donation) Amendment Bill (Dr Jackie Blue): This would amend the Human Tissue Act 1964 to comprehensively update the rules on organ donation. Currently people become organ donors by ticking a box when they apply for a drivers' license. The problem is that the wishes expressed there can be overridden by a donor's next of kin - assuming anybody even notices anyway. The bill would replace this with a comprehensive register administered by the Ministry of Health which will include details on exactly what a donor wants to donate and for what purposes (transplants, anatomical study etc). Importantly, people will also be able to register and say that they do not under any circumstances wish to be a donor. Either way, people's wishes will be respected and will not be able to be overridden by their families. Because of the requirement for informed consent, everyone on the LTSA database will have to reregister, but after that the system will run much more efficiently. Donors will be able to opt in or opt out at any point (currently difficult), and will have much more control over the process. Finally, the registrar would be empowered to conduct public information campaigns to encourage organ donation.
This is an excellent bill. Like a million other New Zealanders, I ticked the box when I applied for a driver's licence, and its always annoyed me that my wishes could be ignored and that the system was so flakey. I'd like to see it fixed, and this bill seems to be a good way of doing it.
Building (Protection of DIY Builders) Amendment Bill (Bob Clarkson): This would amend the Building Act 2004 to allow DIY builders to conduct "restricted building work" (meaning work that is "critical to the integrity of the building and the health and safety of its occupants" or similar work as defined in the Building Code) without requiring the supervision of a licensed building practitioner. They will still have to formally comply with the building code; there just won't be any practical measures to ensure that they do so.
As usual, I'll have another batch when I collect enough responses from MPs.