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Kenneth Wang - Turning the tables on the crooks

Turning the tables on the crooks

Kenneth Wang Wednesday, 15 June 2005 Speeches - Crime & Justice

Speech to crime petition handover; Parliament House; Wednesday, 15 June 2005; 12pm.

The petition being presented here today is important to me as a New Zealander. Like many New Zealanders I am frustrated and angry by the lack of assistance that is offered to victims, and the Labour Government’s soft-on-crime approach.

The national crime figures paint a terrible picture. Every hour of every day 46 crimes are reported in New Zealand. To be more specific that is 14 thefts, 7 burglaries, 5 violent crimes and 4 cars stolen every hour. Despite five years in government, Labour has failed to reduce these crime rates - instead they have spiralled out of control.

It is these escalating crime rates and the lack of effective justice that prompted Manchao Li to write to me asking for assistance, after he had appealed to Prime Minister Helen Clark, but received no response. After I questioned her in Parliament about her lack of response on 8 March, instead of replying herself she instead palmed the letter off to Justice Minister Phil Goff, who in his letter praised Family Group Conferences as being vital to the youth justice process.

As a member of the New Zealand Asian community, ACT would like our country to provide a safe home for new New Zealanders, who have chosen to live in New Zealand and contribute to its well-being. What safety has Labour offered them when, even if the police do manage to catch criminals they are not punched and victims do not receive justice, or compensation? The answer is none.

ACT’s vision is to again make New Zealand one of the safest countries in the world.

ACT advocates Zero Tolerance for Crime. This policy has dramatically reduced crime overseas, generating crime rates that, in some countries, have not been seen for over a century. Zero tolerance works by targeting crime at all levels, especially entry-level youth crime.

ACT believes victims should have some say in the sentencing of criminals, to achieve justice. Criminals, including youth offenders and their families, should be held responsible for the crimes they commit. ACT will abolish the suppression of criminal records. ACT holds true to the phrase that when you do the crime, you do the time.

The criminals who having left Manchao violated have gotten away with attending Family Group Conferences. These delinquents do not take these sessions seriously. Sessions that occur at no cost to these kids, who have taxpayer-funded lawyers. They cost Manchao plenty in terms of time and lost earnings. If Family Group Conferences are so effective, Mr Goff, then why has Manchao Li attended eight Family Group Conferences and nine court hearings without receiving any form of compensation or justice?

ACT believes we should end the pointless Family Group Conferences; insist that schools uphold high standards of behaviour, which we believe should ensure a more successful youth justice process. Education starts at home. Not only do youth offenders need to take responsibility for their actions, but so should their familles.

ACT has a plan to crack down on crime. As Rodney pointed out earlier, ACT makes no apology for being the toughest on crime, nor does it make any apology for putting victims’ rights ahead of the thugs and bullies.

Giving ACT your Party Vote this election is the only way to change the criminal justice system and turn the tables on the crooks.


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