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


National will give funds to victims of crime

Simon Power MP National Party Justice Spokesman

2 August 2008

National will cut bureaucracy and give funds to victims of crime

A National Government will ditch Labour's Sentencing Council and its Criminal Justice Advisory Board and give their funding - more than $6 million - to the victims of crime, National's Justice spokesman, Simon Power announced today.

In a speech to the National Party Annual Conference in Wellington today, he said both organisations were "an extra layer of bureaucracy that is not needed".

The Labour Government has allocated $5.8 million to the Sentencing Council over four years and a further $270,000 over three years for a Criminal Justice Advisory Board.

Mr Power said that unlike Labour, National would put victims' rights first.

"We will acknowledge the hurt and do what's fair. That's where our priorities differ from those of the Labour Government.

"They are establishing a Sentencing Council to draft guidelines for judges on how offenders should be sentenced. And one of the roles of that council will be to reduce the nominal length of prison sentences by an average of 25%.

"Why would anyone vote for that?

"National believes that we already have a body that tells judges how offenders should be sentenced. It's called Parliament.

"So I'm announcing today that under a National Government there will be no Sentencing Council. There will be no extra layer of bureaucracy that is not needed.

"The $5.8 million ... will be used to help kick-start the Victim Compensation Scheme and provide greater access to services for victims.

"Labour has also established a Criminal Justice Advisory Board to advise ministers on further improvements to the criminal justice system.

"Unlike Labour, National hasn't run out of ideas, so that outfit's gone as well. That's another quarter of a million dollars for victims."

Mr Power said if people wanted to know Labour's policy on victim compensation they could "always wait until September when the Law Commission tells them what it is".

"In their reliance on unelected agencies for advice, Labour has forgotten what they were elected to do."

National's victims policies include the Victim Compensation Scheme, which will cover additional expenses faced by victims and access to counselling and which will be funded also by a levy on convicted offenders, measures to improve co-ordination of victims' agencies, and the creation of a parallel 'silent' Victim Notification Register alongside the active register.

He said justice "deserves a more vigilant guardian", and National would "re-balance" the system with its already-announced policies on:

* Tackling the gangs.

* Enhancing police tools.

* Enabling the issuing of on-the-spot domestic violence protection orders.

* Changing the bail laws.

* Expanding the jurisdiction of the Youth Court and the length and range of interventions available for youth offenders.

"And you can expect to hear more on sentencing and prisons in the next few months.

"National wants to restore fairness".


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Back Again: Government Approves TPP11 Mandate

The Government has approved a negotiating mandate for Trans-Pacific Partnership 11 (TPP11), which will ensure New Zealand businesses remain competitive in overseas markets.

Trade Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand will be pushing for the minimal number of changes possible to the original TPP agreement, something that the remaining TPP11 countries have agreed on. More>>




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>>


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>>


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>>


Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>


Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>


(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>






Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election
  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog