New Zealand Parliament Buildings, Wellington, New Zealand.
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Editor’s Note: Here below is a list of the main issues currently under discussion in New Zealand and links to media coverage.

New Zealand Parliament Buildings, Wellington, New Zealand.

Today’s content

Today’s cabinet decision
Thomas Coughlan (Stuff): Decision day dawns for PM Jacinda Ardern over Covid-19 lockdown
John Armstrong (1News): Why New Zealand has to remain in lockdown
Toby Manhire (Spinoff): Today cabinet decides on when to exit the lockdown. Let’s hope for the last time
Tim Watkin (Pundit): Why Cabinet’s Decision On When To Lift Lockdown Is Like Plate Spinning
Pattrick Smellie (Herald): Govt needs to lock down convincing exit strategy (paywalled)
Claire Trevett (Herald): What will be on cautious PM’s mind as lockdown decision looms (paywalled)
Henry Cooke (Stuff): Jacinda Ardern could be in for a lot of political pain if she decides to extend lockdown
Heather du Plessis-Allan (Herald): It’s a big call tomorrow (paywalled)
Peter Wilson (RNZ): Critical decision looms for PM, Cabinet
RNZ: Striking balance between economy and people’s health
Herald: Winston Peters – ‘No value in saving people if greater social damage caused’
Newstalk ZB: PM’s former chief of science: ‘Won’t be long until we go to level two’
Jamie Ensor (Newshub): Sir Peter Gluckman explains what it could take for alert level 3 to last only two weeks
1News: National MP under fire for saying NZ will move to Level 3 on Thursday, despite no Govt decision
Isaac Davison and Kirsty Johnston (Herald): Scientists sound level 3, contact tracing alarm bells
Pattrick Smellie (BusinessDesk): National tracing: the weak link in the route to level 3? (paywalled)
Brian Gaynor (BusinessDesk): The case for far more covid testing (paywalled)
Courtney Addison (Newsroom): Data isn’t enough for this decision
RNZ: Nine to Noon: Level 4 to level 3 – What is the data telling us?
Andy Fyers (Stuff): Is New Zealand ready to leave its level 4 Covid-19 lockdown?
Siouxsie Wiles & Toby Morris (Spinoff): Why contact tracing is so crucial to moving out of lockdown
Thomas Coughlan (Stuff): Jacinda Ardern wants everyone to keep a coronavirus diary to help with contact tracing
Thomas Lumley (Stats Chat): Prevalence estimation: is it out there?

Government strategy
John Weekes (Stuff): Was the Covid-19 lockdown the right call for NZ?
Simon Wilson (Herald):  The 10-point plan to beat pandemic (paywalled)
Rod Jackson (Public Health Expert): Why eliminating Covid-19 is critical
Keith Woodford (Interest): Monday’s COVID-19 decision will be a defining moment for New Zealand
Gary Payinda (Herald): Let’s put Covid ‘herd immunity’ out to pasture
Liam Hehir (Pundit): Contra Damien: What Libertarians Get Wrong About Preserving Freedom
Richard Blaikie (Newsroom): ‘Ready, fire, aim!’ approach is on target
Steve Kilgallon (Stuff): Why no man is an island
Steve Braunias (Herald): The Secret Diary of Ashley Bloomfield (paywalled)
Megan Harvey (Herald): Clarke Gayford defends Jacinda Ardern’s lockdown precautions
Grant Schofield (Stuff): When all public health decisions lead to some harm, which is the right one
Damien Grant (Stuff): A challenge to the well-meaning tyranny of busybodies
Martin Berka (The Conversation): Protecting lives and livelihoods: the data on why New Zealand should relax its coronavirus lockdown from Thursday
Rex Ahdar (Pundit): The Cost Of Lockdown: Lives Now Vs Lives Later
Madison Reidy (Newshub): Health experts feel censored over alternative lockdown plan
Charlotte Graham-McLay (Guardian): Debate over when and how to ease New Zealand’s lockdown turns personal

Richard Harman (Politik): What is “the Quint” and why is it running New Zealand?
Phil Pennington (RNZ): Health Ministry consults with spy agency GCSB for Covid-19 tracing, amid privacy concerns
Zane Small (Newshub): Attorney-General’s decision not to release COVID-19 lockdown advice angers Opposition MPs
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): Dear Attorney-General – you have to release the Covid19 lockdown advice
Newstalk ZB: Parliament to sit again a month after adjourning
Linda Clark (Newsroom): Hard questions will need to asked
Alexander Gillespie (Dominion Post): In an emergency, value counts for more than price
Alexander Gillespie (The Conversation): Five ways New Zealanders’ lives and liberties will be heavily controlled, even after lockdown eases
Daniela Maoate-Cox (RNZ): Powerful or powerless? What can the Epidemic Response Committee do?
Pilita Clark (Financial Times UK): Arise Saint Jacinda, a leader for our troubled times (paywalled)

Life after lockdown
Mariné Lourens (Stuff): How NZ’s Covid-19 lockdown has changed our lives
Nikki Macdonald (Stuff): What the numbers say about how the lockdown has changed our lives
Duncan Greive (Spinoff): What lies on the other side of lockdown and elimination?

Simon Collins (Herald): Childcare centres want to stay closed at alert level 3
Andre Chumko (Stuff): ECE centres beg Government to keep childcare centres closed under Level 3
Dan Satherley and Ella Prendergast (Newshub): Teachers want right to choose when their own schools re-open
Kaye Brunton (Herald): Reopening schools unfair to low-decile families and teachers
Alice Webb-Liddall (Spinoff): Teachers voice concerns around school reopenings under alert level three
RNZ: Ministry clarifies who can go to school in alert level 3
Sam Sachdeva (Newsroom): Schools soothed but concerns remain over reopening
Brittney Deguara (Stuff): 10-pupil bubbles and physical distancing – life at school under Covid-19 level 3
Georgia Forrester (Stuff): What does level 3 mean for early childhood education and schools?
1News: As a number of foreign schools already open, what can NZ learn to prepare for ours?
Ben Leahy (Herald): Three babies have virus amid fears of rise in cases when school returns
Katy Gosset (RNZ): Lockdown bringing little emotional harm to most children – psychologist
Aaron Leaman (Stuff): NZ universities face ‘huge’ funding shortfall if Covid-19 border restrictions stay

Rob Stock (Stuff): Kindness must replace blame in the politics of unemployment
Rob Stock (Stuff): Redundancy hammers mental and physical health
Tracy Watkins and Marine Lourens (Stuff): Where will the jobs be in a post-Covid-19 world?
Gill Bonnett (RNZ): Work visa rules relaxed during lockdown

Andrea Fox (Herald): Govt keeps ‘faith’ as concerns mount about wage subsidy honeypot (paywalled)
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): Government pays out just shy of $10b to support 1.6 million in work
Paul McBeth (BusinessDesk): Wage subsidies paid out to businesses hits $9.9b (paywalled)
Guyon Espiner (RNZ): NZ insurers save $100 million as drivers stay put during Covid-19 lockdown
John Anthony (Stuff): SkyCity asks staff to donate salary into hardship fund to help those it made redundant
Jenny Ruth (BusinessDesk): How much government support is Fletcher Building getting?
Sasha Borissenko (Herald): How law firms are coping and which ones have taken up the Government wage subsidy (paywalled)
RNZ: The Warehouse to cut salaries and wages until move to alert level 2
Fran O’Sullivan (Herald): Rob Fyfe: Preparing us and business for a life after Covid-19 and lockdown (paywalled)

Brian Easton (Pundit): Where Is The New Zealand Economy Going?
Liam Dann (Herald): Why strong lockdown gives NZ the economic edge (paywalled)
Liam Dann (Herald): What will the pandemic economy do to the cost of living? (paywalled)
Brian Gaynor (BusinessDesk): What shape will the recovery be: V, U or L? (paywalled)
Joe Pagani (Pundit): The Five Things To Do For A Radical Recovery
Anuja Nadkarni (Stuff): Sir John Key says economy could be in ‘recessionary environment’ for at least a couple of years
David Farrar: Academic says sock the “rich”
No Right Turn: Make the rich pay their fair share

Covid-19 and Māori, Pacific communities, iwi checkpoints
Carmen Parahi (Stuff): How Māori are helping Māori handle the pain of the Covid-19 pandemic
Steve Elers (Stuff): Special coronavirus response for Māori baseless and unhelpful
Kate Newton (RNZ): Covid-19 deadlier for Māori, Pasifika – modelling predicts
Brittney Deguara (Stuff): Māori twice the risk with Covid-19, but there’s time to reduce ‘avoidable deaths’
Susan Strongman (RNZ): Virus and recession a devastating combination for Māori and Pasifika
RNZ: Māori health workers target greater Covid-19 testing in Auckland and Northland
Kerensa Johnston (E-Tangata): Whose land is it anyway?
Denise Piper (Stuff): MP asks police to stop ‘illegal’ checkpoints, iwi disagree
Helen Castles (1News): Calls for police to shut down Māori-led roadblocks as public report they feel ‘intimidated’
Matt Burrows and Mitchell Alexander (Newshub): Northland MP pleads for ban on community roadblocks after Kaikohe couple ‘harassed’, ‘detained’

Health system
Louise Thornley (Spinoff): A beginner’s guide to public health
Andrea Vance (Stuff): Why aren’t we giving health workers more Covid-19 protection?
Jason Wallls (Herald): Government to spend $200m on bolstering New Zealand’s PPE supply
Nikki Preston (Herald): Bay of Plenty mental health staff and patients tested after colleague tests positive
Rowan Quinn (RNZ): Patients miss out on surgery under Covid-19 lockdown
Melissa Chan-Green (1News): Donations to St John Ambulance, other crucial charities plummet during lockdown
Tom Hunt (Dominion Post): Sewage testing for Covid-19 begins this week
Andre Chumko (Stuff): Medsafe to restrict importing and sale of Covid-19 test kits after calls for regulation
Catherine Hall (Spinoff): The whispered condition: We have turned a blind eye to dementia for too long
Aaron Leaman (Stuff): New Zealand’s war-like Covid-19 campaign could significantly curb the spread of other viruses
ODT Editorial: Hospital plan must be enduring
Mike Houlahan (ODT): Expected floor area seen as inadequate
RNZ: Blood donors urged to plan May, June bookings

Care for elderly, prisoners
1News: Age Concern fears Level 3 lockdown will still leave elderly lonely and ‘desperate’
Cate Broughton (Stuff): Prisons are winning the war against Covid-19 as rest homes struggle
Louisa Steyl (Stuff): Aged care workers praised amid pandemic fears

Inequality, welfare
Mihingarangi Forbes (The Hui): Are we being kind enough to beneficiaries?
The Hui, Lana Andelane (Newshub): $25 benefit increase ‘making a difference’ for beneficiaries during lockdown – Carmel Sepuloni
Madison Reidy (1News): People in poverty struggling even more under alert level 4
1News:‘Living on baked beans on toast’ – Auckland’s lower income areas struggle amid Covid-19 lockdown
Mike O’Brien: The ‘new normal’?
Mike Treen (Daily Blog): Urgent action needed to raise and individualise benefits – first step to a basic income for all
Geoff Kira (Spinoff): Food insecurity for Māori is getting worse. Here are some ways we can all help
RNZ: More than 40,000 Pasifika assisted in NZ during Covid-19 lockdown
Māori TV: Majority of Covid-19 Māori response package ‘fully committed’ to Māori communities
Alison Mau (Stuff): Coronavirus will be worse for women unless we act now
Jo McKenzie-McLean (Stuff): Thousands in Queenstown facing hardship from Covid-19 downturn
Tracey Roxburgh (ODT): $380,000 in vouchers distributed

Lockdown compliance
Nikki Preston (Herald): Kiwis warned relaxing and socialising could lead to new outbreaks
Oliver Lewis (Stuff): Traffic at Christchurch intersections up from early lockdown drop
Katie Kenny (Stuff): Mobile phone tracking shows how Kiwis complied with lockdown at Easter
RNZ: New Zealanders largely staying home during lockdown, data shows
Herald: Man sentenced to month in prison for lockdown breaches
John Weekes (Stuff): Two claiming lockdown makes them illegally detained, sue Jacinda Ardern

Foreign affairs and trade
Richard Harman: China sends medical aid here
Wu Xi (Politik): China’s Ambassador pledges support for NZ: giving back with “precious jade”
Anne-Marie Brady (Stuff): Could an alliance with Taiwan help NZ survive the coronavirus cataclysm?
Eric Crampton (Stuff): New Zealand’s response to pandemic far better than most countries

Local government
Natalie Akoorie (Herald): Hamilton council CEO does U-turn on pay cut
Ellen O’Dwyer (Stuff): Hamilton City Council boss pivots on Covid-19 pay cut
Todd Niall (Stuff): Poor wifi means Auckland Mayor Phil Goff must keep up 86km office commute in lockdown
Bernard Orsman (Herald): Auckland Council bosses take pay cuts of up to 20 per cent
Todd Niall (Stuff): Auckland Council may lower rate rises and suspends hotel rate
Felix Desmarais (RNZ): Council pay cuts would be ‘immoral’, Rotorua chief executive says
Susan Botting (RNZ): Northland councillors not taking pay cut but encouraged to make donations
Skara Bohny (Stuff): Nelson Council staff take pay freeze but it’s still business as usual
Evan Harding (Southland Times): Southland’s elected leaders join Shadbolt in declining to donate portion of pays to charity
Thomas Coughlan (Stuff): David Parker tells councils to keep consenting during Covid-19 crisis
Todd Niall (Stuff): Auckland Mayor Phil Goff open on lower rate rise
Janine Rankin (Manawatū Standard): Manawatū District Council considers holding rates amid pandemic crisis
Damian George (Dominion Post): Tensions boil over as Wellington mayor accuses councillors of putting personal ambitions before city
Kerry Prendergast (Stuff): Wellington, put party politics aside and work as a team
Charlotte Jones (RNZ): Māori consultation ‘window dressing’, BOP councillors say
Tracy Neal (RNZ): Councils wrestle with rates hike decisions as Covid-19 costs emerge
Lois Williams (RNZ): West Coast may borrow to fund Te Tai o Poutini Plan
Marcus Anselm (RNZ): Appointment likely for busy Featherston board

Russel Norman (Stuff): Covid-19 is easier to see and visualise than climate change, but no less dangerous
Jamie Morton (Herald): Covering Climate Now: Why does it take a pandemic to make us act? (paywalled)
Eloise Gibson (Stuff): Covering Climate Now: In search of solutions
Eloise Gibson (Stuff): Can we defend NZ’s staggering natural carbon reserves?
Janet Stephenson (Newsroom): Covid-19 has nothing on what’s coming
Olivia Wannan (Stuff): Should you work from home after the Covid-19 pandemic to save the planet?
Tom Kay (Guardian): By failing to protect our water we have failed everything New Zealanders value

John Anthony (Stuff): Vaccination cards and seat spacing: Air travel in a post-coronavirus world could be vastly different, experts say
Thomas Coughlan (Stuff): Greens want nationwide rail connecting cities to save economy from coronavirus crash
Hamish MacLean (ODT): Greens’ $9b rapid rail plan excludes South
Tracy Neal (RNZ): Regions expect air service after government loan agreement – Originair boss
Katie Kenny (Stuff): With flights grounded indefinitely, how will travel agencies survive Covid-19?
Bernard Orsman (Herald): North Shore homes to be demolished for $360m SkyPath project

Alan Johnson (Daily Blog): What is to become of our housing post Covid-19?
RNZ: Lockdown highlights risks of poor accommodation, housing group says
1News: Damp homes: Lockdown ‘is not as safe for some as it is for others’, housing advocate says
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): What happens if your house is worth less than your home loan?

Henry Cooke (Stuff): How to get thousands of Kiwis home when the world is shutting down
Lincoln Tan (Herald): No NZers will be turned away from mercy flights because of money, MFAT assures
RNZ: Kiwis stuck in India, Philippines to fly home in coming days

Tom O’Connor (Stuff): Global pandemic a chance to re-set New Zealand tourism
Juergen Gnoth (Newsroom): Tourism’s future: a 100% Covid-free NZ

Duncan Greive (Spinoff):Magazines are still not allowed to publish. And still can’t understand why
Mediawatch: Entrepreneurial expat journalist urges media to look beyond ads

Primary industries
Esther Taunton (Stuff): Dairy jobs on offer as Covid-19 lockdown stems flow of migrant workers
Kaitlin Ruddock (1News): Agricultural sector under pressure to feed Kiwis amid coronavirus lockdown
Esther Taunton (Stuff): Farming at level 3 to look little different
Tracy Neal (RNZ): Lack of market access still a concern for growers in level 3 response

Construction industry
Jenny Ruth (BusinessDesk): Construction $3b shutdown cost dwarfs $7.6m benefit – economist (paywalled)
Lawrence Gully (Stuff): Builders asked to adopt new safety measures to stop Covid-19 spread

Katrina Tanirau (Cook Islands News): The Cook Islands declared Covid-19-free
1News: Cook Islands become one of first nations in the world to declare itself Covid-19-free
RNZ: Tonga extends border closure until mid-June
RNZ: NZ Hercules delivers more aid to Vanuatu following cyclone

Jason Walls (Herald): The electorates for more than 342,000 people will change ahead of the 2020 election
RNZ: 11 electorate names and 30 boundaries changed
Cherie Sivignon (Stuff): Commission confirms Brightwater move from Nelson to West Coast-Tasman electorate
Thomas Manch (Stuff): A new Auckland electorate and more than 300,000 people affected by boundary redraw
Alex Braae (Spinoff): New names, new boundaries: How the electorate changes will affect you

Danyl Mclauchlan (Spinoff): Are you ready for radical change? Really?
Robbie Nicol (RNZ): The Good Citizen’s Handbook
Graeme Edgeler: A draft submission on the Electoral (Registration of Sentences Prisoners) Amendment Bill
Adrian Orr and Rob Everett (Stuff): Financial regulators vow to remain vigilant, urge financial institutions to do the right thing
Liam Hehir (Pundit): The King Is Dead, Long Live The (Hos)King
Mike Houlahan (ODT): Southern MPs put in the hard yards
RNZ: Anzac Day commemorations at your doorstep
Christian Fuller (Hawkes Bay Today): Company aware virus was active on Ruby Princess, court told