The demographics of this country are primarily one of migration without which this nation would not have developed into the land we know and are proud to call home. New Zealand is founded on immigration and has directly benefitted over the years from the influx of workers to help fill vacancies and help seal the employment gap. Indeed migrant workers are seen as increasingly important in a number of sectors as they are able to fill labour and skill shortages.
Furthermore, money transfers back to a migrant’s home-land to support family (which far exceed the amount given through official development aid) are helping to advance the development of poorer countries. The World Bank reports, ‘remittance flows to developing countries have more than quadrupled since 2000. Global remittances, including those to high-income countries, are estimated to have reached $529 billion in 2012, compared to $132 billion in 2000. Given these realities it is important that the continuing exploitation of migrant workers in New Zealand is promptly and effectively addressed.