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Sex offender measures only half measures

Sex offender measures only half measures

The measures announced by the Government today on the monitoring of convicted child sex offenders are little more than a sop to Phil Goff's conscience over the Barry Ryder case, says National's Police spokesman Tony Ryall.

"In Opposition, Mr Goff accused National of inaction over Ryder, a serial sex offender. Yet when he became Justice Minister, Phil Goff completely washed his hands of the case.

"These measures announced today won't work because of the current abysmal state of the Corrections Department and the Child, Youth and Family service.

"Both departments are struggling to cope with their workloads, with the Probation Service in particular in a shambles. You only need to follow reports each week of yet another scandal involving a parolee to see this.

"National also questions the cynical timing of today's announcement - one day before a report on Jules Mikus, the killer of Teresa Cormack, is due to be made public. This report is likely to show major failings on the part of welfare authorities.

"It's time the Government realised that unless resources are diverted from 'wasteful' areas, measures like these announced today will not protect young New Zealanders from sex offenders.

"It's National's view that extending the use of private prisons is the way to free up resources for the Corrections Department, allowing it to channel funds into other services which would protect young people from sex offenders," says Mr Ryall.

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