Grey Power numbers swell

Grey Power Nelson is tracking towards its goal of 10,000 members, with several hundred signed on since changes to the top guard in September.

Recently elected president Neville Male said the Nelson division of the national lobby group had climbed to 9000 members since the new executive was voted in.

"The objective is to get to 10,000."

Mr Male said numbers had dropped away in recent years as discounts on goods and services had dwindled, but moves were being made to resume benefits for cardholders from local businesses.

"If we get the numbers up it makes us more viable, and gives us a bigger voice."

Mr Male was elected after a meeting was called in September to install a new governing body of Grey Power Nelson, after the quorum of the Nelson chapter was wiped out by the resignation of five members of the executive committee, plus former president Gordon Currie.

Mr Male said this week that Grey Power's political leanings in the past had also driven people away.

"Our constitution states the organisation is apolitical. I wouldn't want us to become the darlings of some political party. Our membership reflects all colours of the political spectrum," Mr Male said.

He said the aim was to return Grey Power Nelson to a group that represented all the major issues affecting older people. Dr John Moore, who was a health representative on a range of organisations, was helping to draft a strategic plan for Grey Power Nelson, Mr Male said.

He welcomed the Nelson City Council's move to create a People's Panel, which offered the public the chance to have a say on council matters. The council has invited the public to become part of the survey panel.

Mr Male said Nelson Mayor Aldo Miccio asked Grey Power to take part.

Grey Power also welcomed the chance to take part in the council's Framing the Future long-term strategy, and while the goals of the "Towards Nelson 2060" project were commendable, the timeframes involved would be a bit of a stretch for most Grey Power members.

The Nelson Mail