A Plain Language Bill is being considered by a Parliament’s the Governance and Administration Select Committee – see HERE – which promotes the use of plain and simple English in all official documents and websites so the information is more easily understood.
However, it does not address the growing problem caused by the increasing inclusion of Maori words into official English communications without a translation, which often renders the meaning incomprehensible.
Writer Joe Bennett explains the problem eloquently in his weekly column “Evolving language scoffs at moral or political aims”:
If a clause is included in the Bill requiring that whenever words of another language – including Maori – are inserted into official English communications, they must be accompanied by the English translation, this growing problem could be resolved.
This requirement should also apply to spoken communications – including by taxpayer funded TVNZ and RadioNZ – so that every time Maori words are used in English sentences, an English translation will be required by law.
If you would like to promote this suggestion to members of the Government Administration Select Committee that are dealing with the Bill, they are Labour MPs Naisi Chen (Deputy Chairman), Rachel Boyack (sponsor of the Bill), and Deborah Russell, and National MPs Ian McKelvie (Chairman) and Michael Woodhouse. All MP email addresses can be found on the NZCPR website HERE.
Please help us build awareness of this initiative by sharing our petition as widely as you can. The direct link is here: https://www.nzcpr.com/plain-english-petition/
Thanks for your support!