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Deployment Must Not Leave Public At Risk

Deployment Must Not Leave Public At Risk

Tuesday 21 Sep 2004

Dr Muriel Newman - Press Releases - Crime & Justice

Bougainville, the Solomon Islands, traffic duties, prison duties and, now, Southeast Asia - it seems the only place that Labour doesn't want our police is on the streets fighting crime, ACT New Zealand Deputy Leader and Police Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman said today.

"While ACT agrees that it is important to protect our representatives overseas, a deployment of police officers to New Zealand embassies in Southeast Asia must not come at the expense of Kiwis' safety at home," Dr Newman said.

"International data has already shown that New Zealand - one of the most under-policed nations in the world - has one of the world's hardest-working police forces.

"Yet this Government continues to pour on the pressure. Police struggling against violent crime are being pulled away to babysit prisoners, there are police deployed in Bougainville and the Solomons, and most new recruits are ring-fenced to fill traffic ticket quotas.

"Meanwhile, more and more New Zealanders are left feeling increasingly unsafe on the streets, and even in their own homes, with a huge 60 percent of crime now going unreported.

"A core role of any government is the maintenance of law and order, and law-abiding citizens have a right to feel safe in their homes. With our core policing officers already under-resourced and overstretched, I am writing to the Prime Minister to seek an assurance that this latest move will not result in Kiwis at home being left even more at risk," Dr Newman said.

ENDS

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