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Police Deserve Strong Community Support

Police Deserve Strong Community Support

Manukau Mayor Sir Barry Curtis says the Counties Manukau Police are wrongly being criticised over the length of the Kahui twins inquiry and should instead be praised for being meticulous and following correct legal procedure.

“The Police do a superb job in a challenging social environment and deserve the strongest public support. They certainly have mine, and the full support of Manukau City Council. There is a much wider issue than the twins’ death and that is the level and extent of child abuse in families, of which the Kahui case is the tip of the iceberg. The Police spend a huge percentage of their resources on domestic and family violence, which is unacceptable. There should be zero tolerance of violence in homes and neglect of children.

“This is a community issue and there must be a community solution. The Police are the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff and have to deal with the results of this violence. But prevention is the key. Attitudes need to change, and in the Kahui case the criticism should be aimed at perpetrators of the violence, not the Police.

“Counties Manukau Police have to work within the law and there is a process to follow in any investigation. The last thing we need is to find that a hasty investigation process causes problems in the prosecution after there’s an arrest. Due process must be followed.

“I would ask for public patience while the investigation is continuing. But I would also throw down a challenge to the entire community to take family violence seriously, to take ownership at the grass roots level, and to aim to eradicate it from New Zealand.

“I urge anyone who is aware of abuse and violence to report it, even if it is not in their own family. We must know the extent of the problem,” Sir Barry says.

Sir Barry is chairman of the National Taskforce for the Reduction of Community Violence Leaders’ Group.


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