Parliament

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

 

A Berryman inquiry must reopen blame laws

A Berryman inquiry must reopen blame laws

Wednesday, 20 April 2005

Crime & Justice

Even if a fresh select committee inquiry gets proper compensation for the Berryman’s, the committee will not do a proper job if it stops there. ACT Justice spokesperson Stephen Franks said today.

“To fathom why the Prime Minister, Margaret Wilson and Harry Duynhoven have done nothing to expose and end this scandal we need to understand their dilemma,” Mr Franks said. “I don’t believe they are completely callous. They have supported the laws that now drive fear into every New Zealander involved in an accident instead of remorse.

“The select committee will have to open up the nanny state concept of law. For 20 years the legal industry has been bent on making criminals out of people who mean no harm. Labour Ministers have been into that victim culture boots and all.”

Mr Franks said the Buildings Act, the Resource Management Act, parts of the Crimes Act and the Health and Safety in Employment Act, all create criminal liability for people who intend no harm to others.

“Airline Pilots have been fighting this culture for years and warning that the truth won’t get out when accidents are treated as criminal. If OSH had not been set up to “get someone,” after every accident, the Berryman scandal would never have happened,” Mr Franks said.

“ACT MP Owen Jennings ran into a brick wall defending that system when he campaigned for the Berrymans six years ago. When there is the prospect of punishment as a criminal for every accident, anyone who could be blamed goes to ground.

“Every decent human impulse to say “I’m terribly sorry, what can I do to make amends” is frozen by the lawyer’s icy advice to “say nothing in case it is held against you” while you wait for the formal investigation and court case.

“I don’t believe the Army would have been so determined on a cover up if avoiding embarrassment had been the only motive. Like everyone else in New Zealand they run scared. The blame industry can destroy anyone no matter how good their original intentions.

“It’s time the police were allowed to go back to hunting for people who mean harm to others. We have got more than enough of those to keep them busy. The OSH inspectors should be looking for breaches of regulations not trying to find individuals to bankrupt.

“The committee’s terms of reference will have to be wide enough to go past the first villains,” Mr Franks said.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Another Leader Exiting: Statement From Peter Dunne

I have concluded, based on recent polling, and other soundings I have been taking over the last few weeks, that, the volatility and uncertainty notwithstanding, there is now a mood amongst Ōhāriu voters for a change of MP, which is unlikely to alter...

“I have therefore decided that it is time for me to stand aside, so the people of Ōhāriu can elect a new electorate MP. More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Campaign Launch

One of the key motifs of Ardern’s speech was her repeated use of the phrase – “Now, what?” Cleverly, that looks like being Labour’s response to National’s ‘steady as it goes’ warning against not putting the economic ‘gains’ at risk. More>>

ALSO:

Lyndon Hood: Social Welfare, Explained

Speaking as someone who has seen better times and nowadays mostly operates by being really annoying and humiliating to deal with, I have some fellow feeling with the current system, so I’ll take this chance to set a few things straight.. More>>

ALSO:

Deregistered: Independent Board Decision On Family First

The Board considers that Family First has a purpose to promote its own particular views about marriage and the traditional family that cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable... More>>

ALSO:

Transport Policies: Nats' New $10.5bn Roads Of National Significance

National is committing to the next generation of Roads of National Significance, National Party Transport Spokesperson Simon Bridges says. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>

ALSO:

Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>

ALSO:

Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election