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Mayor Justin Lester's Speech at UNIHRD

Mayor Justin Lester's speech at United Nations International Holocaust Remembrance Day,
Wellington January 2018


NZ National Commission for UNESCO - Robyn Baker, Chair and Vicki Soanes, Secretary General
Wellington City Council – we have always been humbled that our council is a partner of The
Holocaust Centre. It is an honour to support the Holocaust Centre each year with a grant to
commemorate Holocaust Remembrance Day.
Human Rights Commission/Council of Jewish Women/B’Nai Brith Wellington Unit
Wellington Regional Jewish Council/ Wilson Funeral Home

MP’s and Councillors
Embassies & Consulates
Very importantly - Holocaust Survivors and descendants

Today, we are here to do a very important thing.

We are here to honour and remember the victims and survivors of the Shoah, the Holocaust. We do
so on UN International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The date marks the liberation of AuschwitzBirkenau
and honours the victims of Nazism.

This year the Holocaust Centre of NZ (HCNZ) has aligned with the Human Rights Commission in
support of their campaign – Give Nothing To Racism.

So today we are also here to ensure that we do everything in our power to ensure nothing like this
happens again.

All of us are responsible for advancing the causes of peace, justice and human rights both in New
Zealand and around the world.

In Wellington we take pride in our tolerance and acceptance of others. We are one of the most multicultural
cities in the world and yet we live in peace. Not many countries can say that. In Wellington, w
don’t just tolerate diversity, we celebrate it. We embrace our difference.

This is an important message for our children and children everywhere. A message that we will not
allow them to live in a world of racism and hatred.

We will teach them to stand up and speak out, not to be silent or a bystandaer – to fight against
racism, religious intolerance and homophobia.

We will teach them to “give nothing to racism”.

This means - no jokes, no jibes, no small hateful words.

I will teach my children that even these small hateful words can have a huge impact.
However, I must say that I have never met a child that is inherently evil. They are influenced by
their surrounds and most often by their parents. We need to be an example for our children.
This Remembrance Day gives us the opportunity to reflect on the lesson that even the smallest act
of prejudice can begin the process of allowing hatred to flourish.

That small hateful words and acts can have a very chilling effect on communities. They give
permission for even larger acts of violence and intolerance. We cannot allow these small things to

We cannot be bystanders. We can’t give anything to racism.

The Holocaust Centre does an incredible job in educating the community in this very thing. Thank
you for the work you do.

As I said last year, today is an opportunity to rededicate ourselves to our best ideals, to commit
ourselves to doing more to help those in need, to do more to include those who are left behind, to
reject hatred and to strive for a better world together.

Mayor Justin Lester, at UN International Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony, Makara,
Wellington. January 26th 2018

Press Release for UNIHRD 2018

Strong messages from 2018 Holocaust observance

Linking this year’s United Nations International Holocaust Remembrance Day (UNIHRD) with the New Zealand Human Rights Commission’s campaign “Give nothing to racism” produced some very forthright statements at the commemoration ceremonies.

Many speakers quoted the slogan “Be an upstander, not a bystander”.

At the Makara Jewish Cemetery’s Holocaust Memorial ceremony, the peaceful rural surroundings of grazing sheep and electricity-generating windmills were contrasted with the day in 2004 when nearly a hundred Jewish graves were vandalized and the prayer house reduced to a smoking shell.

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Paul Seideman Award: Junior Winner

The winning entry in the Junior section was a short documentary video created and produced by Seb Bartley of Cambridge High School.

UN International Holocaust Remembrance Day speech by Dame Susan Devoy, Race Relations commissioner

Hate starts small: New Zealanders must not be bystanders to racism

This week I was sent screenshots of hateful, antisemitic Facebook posts. Part of honouring our incredibly brave Holocaust survivors is calling out bigotry wherever we see it, says Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy

Last year the Human Rights Commission launched New Zealand’s first anti-racism campaign. It called on everyday Kiwis to recognise the seeds of hate and to not be a bystander, but to call racism or prejudice out when we see it.

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Chris Bishop's Speech

Chris Bishop, MP for Hutt South

Speech at United Nations International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Grand Hall, Parliament

26 January 2018

It’s an honour to deliver this address, commemorating the 73rd Anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz on January 27th 1945, a day which has come to be known as the International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Today we remember the death of six million Jews, including 1.5 million children, and the death of millions of Poles, Russians, Roma, the disabled, political opponents, and homosexuals under the Nazi onslaught.

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Kasa Bainesay Harbor's Speech

UN International Holocaust memorial Remembrance Day, Wellington January 2018

Israeli Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission Mrs Kasa Bainesay Harbor 

We have gathered here today to remember and to show our respect to the victims of the Holocaust.

Six Million Jews, one third of the Jewish nation, were murdered by Nazis in the Shoa-Holocaust.

One and a half million of these murdered Jews were innocent children whose whole life was still ahead of them. Each and every one of them, men, women, children, had  a name, had a loving family, had friends, dreams, aspirations and life of their own.

Each Jewish child who was murdered had a future ahead of him- potential capabilities that never materialized.

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Robyn Baker's speech


E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e rau rangatira mā

Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa

(To all authorities, all voices, to the many chiefs gathered here Greetings, greetings, greetings to everyone)

Thank you for the opportunity to speak today. The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO has actively participated in the commemoration of Holocaust Remembrance Day for many years now, and our commitment to this important day remains as strong as ever. We are also active supporters of the Human Rights Commission’s work. In 2016 we sponsored the Commission’s ‘That’s Us’ campaign. And we are extremely proud and highly supportive of the Human Rights Commission’s ‘Give Nothing to Racism’ campaign. We are delighted that the Holocaust Centre of New Zealand is focusing its theme this year around this campaign’s powerful message. Holocaust Remembrance Day is a day to pay tribute to the memory of the victims of the Holocaust.

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United Nations International Holocaust Remembrance Day Public Ceremony

The Holocaust Centre of NZ, in conjunction with: New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO,
Wellington City Council, NZ Human Rights Commission, Wellington Regional Jewish Council, Council of Jewish Women, B’Nai Brith (Wellington Unit), and Wilson Funeral Home invite you to join us as we honour and remember the victims & survivors of the Holocaust and stand together against racism and prejudice.

The ceremony will take place on Friday the 26th of January 2018 at 1pm at Makara Cemetery, Wellington. Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for details of free public transport leaving Molesworth St, Thorndon & Karori en route.

A flyer for the event is available here.

Dame Susan Devoy and Holocaust survivor and HCNZ director Inge Woolf warn about dangers of hate speech

Read about the 2017 event here.

Watch news coverage of the 2017 event, including video interviews of them here:



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