Parliament

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

 

Alexander offers Nats help for crime policies


Alexander offers Nats help for crime policies

United Future’s law and order spokesman, Marc Alexander, says he welcomes National’s new-found commitment to fighting crime in New Zealand, but says National also needs United Future’s youth, gang and victims’ rights focus to make up a whole package.

“Don Brash is committed to spending millions at the end of the criminal lifestyle with no parole and more prisons, but United Future wants to begin at the roots of crime and not the outer branches,” he said.

“United Future announced a policy of going after the gangs last year – and we have legislation prepared to put it into action.

“It’s also noticeable that Dr Brash, in his weekend speech, mentioned victims just twice and victims’ rights not at all – an essential element of any successful anti-crime policy.

Mr Alexander said “The major thing missing from National’s solution is solid family intervention at an early age.

“The Australian Institute of Criminology reported research last year that the maltreatment of a child significantly increases the risk of that child becoming an offender before their 18th birthday.

“One important conclusion can be drawn from research – youth crime can be targeted, but for there to be any real success intervention with at risk families needs to before the years of offending begin.

“We need to look at the statistics in relation to youth justice and not resort to scaremongering.

“In the last 5 years or so, the youth offending statistics have been relatively stable. The problem is that there is a hard-core group of offenders (about 5-15% of youth offenders) who commit somewhere between 55% and 75% of all youth crime.

“Further, violent crime tends to be committed younger, and is more severe.

“Information from the youth court tells us this group

* is overwhelmingly male,

* had dysfunctional families with no male role model,

* 80% have not attended high school since the third form,

* most have alcohol and drug problems –

* and there is a totally disproportionate representation of Maori.

“United Future does support the lowering of the age of criminal responsibility but given the facts above, we believe that responsibility needs to be returned to parents and families to ensure that their young people do not offend.

“We propose that where appropriate, parents are held responsible as co-offenders for the offences their children commit – including liability for damages and reparation.

“Further, because youth offenders come from a pool of people not connected with the education system, we would introduce a national truancy database as recommended in 1992 – and ensure parents are responsible for ensuring their children receive education,” said Mr Alexander.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Veronika Meduna: The Kaikoura Rebuild

A Scoop Foundation Investigation

Friday will be a big day for people north of Kaikōura – and for hundreds of construction workers who are racing to reopen State Highway 1 in time for the holiday season.

By the afternoon, the South Island’s main transport corridor will be open to traffic again, more than a year after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake mangled bridges and tunnels, twisted rail tracks and buried sections of the road under massive landslides. More>>

 

BPS HYEFU WYSIWYG: Labour's Budget Plans, Families Package

“Today we are announcing the full details of the Government’s Families Package. This is paid for by rejecting National’s tax cuts and instead targeting spending at those who need it most. It will lift 88,000 children out of poverty by 2021." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Defence Spending, Alabama, And Dolly Parton

The spending lavished on Defence projects to meet the risks that could maybe, possibly, theoretically face New Zealand in future is breath-taking, given how successive governments have been reluctant to spend even a fraction of those amounts on the nation’s actual social needs. More>>

ALSO:

Members' Bills: End Of Life Choice Bill Passes First Reading

The End of Life Choice Bill in the name of David Seymour has been sent to a select committee for consideration by 76 votes to 44. It is the third time Parliament has voted on the issue in recent decades and the first time such a Bill has made it over the first hurdle. More>>

ALSO:

State Sector: MPI Survives Defrag Of Portfolios

The Ministry for Primary Industries will not be split under the new government, but will instead serve as an overarching body for four portfolio-based entities focused on fisheries, forestry, biosecurity and food safety. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Vulnerable Kids, RNZ Funding, And Poppy

The decision to remove the word ‘vulnerable’ from the Ministry for Vulnerable Children could well mark a whole shift in approach to the care of children in need... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages