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Boot Camp consultation given the boot

26 August 2009
Media Statement

Boot Camp consultation given the boot

National has broken its promise to listen to New Zealanders over the military style “boot camps”, with today’s announcement that the Government is pushing ahead with its plans, Labour’s Youth Affairs spokesperson Jacinda Ardern said today.

“The Select Committee scrutinising the proposed law allowing the boot camps hasn’t even reported back yet. So how can National be listening to what Kiwis have to say on the issue?” Jacinda Ardern said.

“The majority of submissions to the Social Services Select Committee have been opposed to the military style camps. The tenor of the opposition has been the same from submitters - boot camps are counter-productive in straightening out young offenders.”

Jacinda Ardern said Prime Minister John Key today acknowledged National’s boot camp plans had come in for criticism, but he has personally backed them going ahead.

“So where does that leave the Select Committee process and the opinions of experienced youth workers who are telling the Government that boots camps won’t work?” Jacinda Ardern said.

“The Select Committee report on boot camps was due to be released in August but was recently delayed until November. With nearly all the feedback on the boot camps negative, one is left wondering whether the timing is a convenient coincidence.

“A pattern is emerging from National that it has no time for those who use Select Committees to voice their concerns against Government plans.

“Paula Bennett and John Key are ignoring those in the know about boot camps in an attempt to appear to be taking action on youth crime.

“The boot camps were never anything more than a political charade, designed to create an impression during the election campaign that National would be tough on crime.” Jacinda Ardern said.


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