Say No To Serco In Aotearoa

To all NZ political parties:


We believe only an independent investigation can reveal the problems Serco have brought to New Zealand’s public services, and that their track record of failure should immediately disqualify them from consideration for any future public sector contracts.

We’d like your support to demand these actions to ensure we get the quality public services we all deserve.

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5,000 signatures

Some things don’t make sense. Like letting your taxes fund a British company’s profits. But that’s what’s happening. You were told that contracting Serco to run Mt Eden Prison would lead to savings for the taxpayer. You weren’t told the reality, that Serco’s contract meant less money being put into an invisible, but essential, public service.

Reality has hit hard. The continuing revelations about the mismanagement of Mt Eden are both shocking [1] and yet, somehow, unsurprising [2]. Unsurprising because anyone who looks at Serco’s history of managing detention centres in the UK and Australia would see the same chronic failures, the same culture of violence, and the same lack of accountability.

If Serco were an employee, their C.V would render them unemployable. They have failed in the UK, they have failed in Australia. And in New Zealand, where they have only just started to expand their business, they have failed in spectacular fashion. It’s time to act.

New Zealand isn’t the first country to be conned by Serco’s promises. But their presence in our public services is nowhere near that of the UK, or Australia [3]. Despite repeated failures in those countries, despite horrific mismanagement and the loss of lives, Serco continued to bid for contracts in those countries. Even worse, they were given them!

The investigation by Corrections into Serco will be out October 30th [4]. However, Prison officers and ex-inmates have expressed concerns about the extent and integrity of Corrections inquiry, believing it unable to examine the root causes of the culture of violence in, and incompetent management of, Mt Eden prison. Given the Minister for Corrections shambolic performance under questioning about evidence released so far [5], it’s simply not good enough.

So here’s where we draw the line. We are demanding a full, independent investigation into Serco’s involvement in Mt Eden Prison. One with the integrity and scope that the New Zealand public deserves. But that’s not all. We are also demanding a moratorium on the consideration of Serco for any further public sector contracts. Because we can’t afford to let them fail again in Children’s Services, Mental Health or State Housing.

We need your support, your voices. Because it’s not right that your money funds failure. It’s not right that Serco continue to profit from Mt Eden even as more and more evidence of their incompetence emerges. And it’s certainly not right that Serco make a first class profit, while New Zealand gets second class services. Make your voice heard. Say no to Serco in Aotearoa.


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