Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Truth In Sentencing Expensive And Ineffective

Minister of Justice Phil Goff today released two reports on the Truth in Sentencing Bill promoted by Hon Richard Prebble which show that the proposal is vastly expensive and unlikely to reduce crime.

“The ‘truth in sentencing’ regime proposed by Mr Prebble would lead to an increase of 55% in the prison population. This increase would carry with it an extraordinary cost of $838 million over 3 years,” Mr Goff said.

“Yet there is no evidence that nearly a billion dollars spent in this way would actually reduce crime rates. Overseas experience shows rising crime trends return, after the one-off effect of taking more criminals out of circulation at any one time works through the system.

“In contrast, the same billion dollars invested in early intervention, crime prevention, policing and measures to target hardcore offenders would produce real crime reduction results.

“The challenge would be to find a spare billion dollars – a task ACT would make no easier by cutting $5 billion a year from government revenue through their flat tax plan.

“Overseas evidence shows that, for hardcore offenders who cannot be rehabilitated, the best way to deal with them is to lock them up longer and deny the opportunity to re-offend. However, truth in sentencing does not target this group. It locks all offenders up for longer regardless of the threat they pose.

“Judges have discretion in sentencing to ensure that sentences imposed protect society from dangerous offenders. This discretion must be used appropriately. Simplistic proposals based on discredited American models, such as truth in sentencing, mandatory sentencing and sentencing commissions, reduce the judiciary’s ability to deliver sentences that fit the crime.

“There is also substantial evidence that turning prisoners out on the street at the end of their sentence without parole support and supervision, as Mr Prebble’s bill would, makes them far more likely to re-offend than if they are released on parole.

“Concerns about transparency in sentencing and inflexibility of parole laws are legitimate. However, they are better addressed by thorough and objective consideration. The major review of sentencing and parole laws, which I instructed the Ministry of Justice to begin in February, will do just that,” Mr Goff said.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Scoop 3.0: How You Can Help Scoop’s Evolution

Entering into its third decade of operation, the Scoop news ecosystem is set to undergo another phase of transformation and evolution.

We have big plans for 2018 as we look to expand our public interest journalism coverage, upgrade our publishing infrastructure and offer even more valuable business tools to commercial users of Scoop. More>>

 
 

Speaking Of Transport: Public Engagement On Wellington Scenarios

“Our work on possible solutions for Wellington’s transport future is ongoing, but has progressed to the stage where we’re ready to share our ideas with the public and seek their feedback to help guide our next steps...” More>>

ALSO:

Parental Leave: National's Time-Sharing Change Fails

National has proposed a change to the Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Bill that would allow both parents to take paid parental leave at the same time, if that is what suits them best. More>>

ALSO:

Train Free Thursday: Workers Strike To Defend Terms Of Employment

"They signed up to these conditions a year ago when they got the contract for Wellington's rail services. Now they're trying to increase profits by squeezing frontline workers." More>>

ALSO:

Seclusion: Ombudsman Emphasises Importance Of Monitoring

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says that while there have been changes to the Education (Update) Amendment Act 2017 to prohibit the use of seclusion, the report is an important reminder of the importance of regular monitoring of schools. More>>

ALSO:

United Future History: "All Good Things Must End"

'We’re extremely proud of what we’ve achieved over the past 15 years, working alongside the government of the day, both National and Labour.' Mr Light told members on Monday. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Outcome, And The Hobbit Law

Somehow the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal has come lurching back from the dead – and as predicted in this column last week, the member countries gathered in Vietnam have announced a deal in broad principle, shunted aside until a later date the stuff on which they don’t agree, and declared victory. More>>

Agreeing To Differ: Greens Maintain Opposition To TPPA
“The Green Party has long opposed the TPPA. The new proposed deal, which came out of the weekend’s talks, still contains key ISDS concessions to corporations that put our democracy at risk, so our position remains the same,” said Green Party trade spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman. More>>

ALSO:

Monitoring Report: A New Chapter For Children’s Rights In New Zealand?

The Children’s Commissioner is calling on the country to embrace children’s rights to ensure their overall well-being. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election