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


No More New Prisons And Justice That Works

11 July 2002

Green MP Nandor Tanczos today launched the party's justice policy, calling for a moratorium on new prisons. The policy is available at

He asked voters to look behind the election year hype on 'law and order' and vote for policies based on fact.

Launching the policy at the site of the controversial proposed new prison at Ngawha, Nandor said victims of crime must be central to the justice process and that rehabilitation and halting re-offending must be the focus of how we deal with offenders.

"The Green policy acknowledges there are a small number of violent criminals who pose an ongoing danger to the community and who need to be locked up. However many of the people currently in prison do not need to be there and can be dealt with in much more productive ways," said Nandor.

* In the year 2000 20 per cent of all cases resulting in a prison sentence were for traffic offences. Thirty one per cent of all prison sentences were for property offences; * Upon release from prison 86 per cent of ex-inmates are re-convicted of an offence within five years. Sixty-two per cent of prison inmates have been in prison before; * New Zealand imprisons 145 people per 100,000 residents, compared with 125 in Britain, 110 in Australia and 60 in Denmark and Norway.

"If people are not a threat to others the Greens believe there are better ways to punish offenders, redress the harm they have caused and prevent future offending than by imprisonment. The facts support this position."

The head of Victoria University's Crime and Justice Research Unit Dr Gabrielle Maxwell has warned the public to be wary of political rhetoric on 'law and order', saying international research shows longer sentences tended to result in an increase in re-offending - particularly serious and violent re-offending.

Dr Maxwell also notes that most inmates were not in prison for violent offences and were not 'dangerous' to others. If people want safer communities they should consider locking up fewer people for shorter periods and pushing for a focus on community-based, rehabilitative sentences.

"This is the kind of evidence that the Green Justice policy has always been based and this is why the Greens are calling for an immediate moratorium on more new prisons.

"The Greens want to cut crime, cut re-offending and ensure offenders front up and take responsibility for the damage they cause. Above all we are committed to a different kind of justice that makes victims of crime central to the process and gives priority to healing the harm caused by crime."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Peters/Ardern Triumph

There are a lot of good reasons to feel joyful about this outcome. It is what so many young voters – the best hope for the country’s future – wanted.

Far more important than the implications for the Economy Gods ( is the dollar up or down? ) last night’s outcome will also mean many, many vulnerable New Zealanders will have a better life over the next three years at least.

Yet the desire for change was in the majority, across the country..>>>More


Labour on its agreement |Peters: Post-Election Announcement Speech | Greenpeace “cautiously hopeful” about new Government | ACT - Madman on the loose | E tū ecstatic | Chamber welcomes the outcome | Greens on their joining Govt | EDS welcomes new govt | Immigrant groups worry | Feds ready to engage new coalition government | Labour Ministers of the Crown announced


Climate: Increasing Greenhouse Emissions Hit NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate…More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>


Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>


Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>


Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>


Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>




Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election