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Mental Health Reforms Are PC Nonsense

22 July 2004

Mental Health Reforms Are PC Nonsense

New Zealand First mental health spokesperson Ron Mark says he fears that the Government’s failing mental health system could result in another tragedy.

Mr Mark’s comments follow the release of convicted rapist Mosese Taloa from prison yesterday. Taloa has been serving a prison term for raping a 15-year-old school girl in Auckland in 1996. He was previously convicted of assault with intent to commit rape in 1985 when he was 16.

“Taloa has been a solvent user since the age of 11, and has been described by prison staff as unstable. Prison officers who have managed him over the past eight years have said they believe it will not take long for him to reoffend,” said Mr Mark.

“The system cannot keep sending seriously disturbed criminal offenders into the community in the hope that they will be able to integrate themselves into society without any problems.

“The mental health reforms pursued by both Labour and National governments have promoted the de-institutionalisation model under the blind ideology that everyone has a right to live in the community, regardless of their state of mind or intellectual capability.

“There is a place for secure mental health institutions for those individuals who are a risk to society and themselves, and it is time the Government accepted this.

“New Zealand First opposed the reforms from the outset. Let’s put a stop to all the PC nonsense. Redefining mental illness and criminal offending won’t stop the criminal behaviour of the bad and mad,” said Mr Mark.

ENDS


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