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Money Won't Stop Pressure On The Courts

Money Won't Stop Pressure On The Courts

Thursday 20 May 2004

Stephen Franks Press Releases -Crime & Justice

Announcing an increase of $18 million a year for the courts won't fix the justice system -in fact, a seven percent increase over the current $250 million just feeds the problem, ACT New Zealand Justice Spokesman Stephen Franks said today.

"The number of judges and tribunal members has grown at three times our rate of population growth since 1970, my whole working life," Mr Franks said.

"We will never keep up with the voracious legal industry as long as we keep feeding it with more laws, more discretions for officials, more incentives to cry over spilt milk and blame others for life's misfortunes, and to block others from using their own lands and lives as they choose.

"A government that boasts about appointing more Family Court judges can never curb the `lawyerisation' of New Zealand. Our chief Family Court judge told us would need at least five extra judges when, for property sharing purposes, Labour compulsorily `married' up to 200,000 people who had chosen to live together without marrying.

"When the community is struggling to find volunteers who will run the new legal risks in organising school trips, traditional races and other events, and even lolly scrambles, $73 million more for the courts should be a cause for shame - not boasting - by Minister Barker," Mr Franks said.

ENDS

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