Protection of fundamental freedoms in the digital age

20 Jun 2014

This paper provides an update in relation to surveillance and human rights in New Zealand since 2013.

The New Zealand Human Rights Commission is one of four National Human Rights Institutions that submitted to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights’ report: ‘The Right To Privacy In The Digital Age’ released recently.

The NZ Human Rights Commissions’ submission noted:

Ultimately this is an issue of trust – the trust of the people.

If the trust of the people in the intelligence services is undermined, those services will be less able to do their work for the people.

This trust is strengthened by oversight that the people have confidence in. It is the nature of Parliamentary democracy that political opponents allege the other side is not worthy of being trusted with governing the country.

A Parliamentary consensus that the oversight mechanisms are in place is therefore the best evidence the people can have that no matter who governs the country and controls the intelligence services freedom and human rights will be respected.

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