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New MP pledges to fight for social justice

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 12/10/2016

Barry Coates, the Green Party's new MP, has told parliament he entered politics to fight for sustainability and social justice.

In his maiden speech on Wednesday, Mr Coates detailed his track record of campaigning for the environment and against poverty.

The former Oxfam New Zealand executive director said inequality around the world had risen to unprecedented levels, and people were feeling alienated from politics and power structures.

"I have a passion for sustainability and social justice," he said.

"Now I want to achieve change from within the political system and I feel a strong sense of urgency - we have to face up to the major challenges facing our people and the planet."

Mr Coates has replaced Kevin Hague, who resigned to become the chief executive of Forest and Bird.

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