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

 


Robbing The Northern Wairoa To Pay Key

Rt Hon Winston Peters
New Zealand First Leader
10 December 2012

Speech: Protest Meeting at cutback of services of Dargaville Courthouse
Dargaville Courthouse, Hokianga Road, Dargaville
Monday 10 December 2012, 12.15pm.

Robbing The Northern Wairoa To Pay Key

The Dargaville District Court is to become a ‘Hearings Only’ Court.
All the services offered over the counter now will only be offered on the ‘Hearings Only’ days.

Staff will be cut back here whose services will now be done by two Whangarei staff. On the no hearings days the people of this area will simply have to travel to Whangarei.

The Whangarei staff are already under serious pressure which will only get worse.

The Whangarei Court staffs are not as familiar with the Northern Wairoa or Kaipara as the current staff here.

Travel from Dargaville to Whangarei, plus parking, is likely to take an hour.
Travel from parts of the Northern Wairoa will take a great deal longer than that and for some up to almost two hours, in the case of Pouto residents for example.

Justice is more than a matter of dollars and cents. The cutting of costs and so called savings are bogus. Yes – a Government department will save some money but the extra costs will fall on local communities.

The significant closure of services of the Dargaville District Court hits at the core of rural New Zealand communities.

Much of the Kaipara region or Northern Wairoa is low decile with entrenched poverty, high Maori population and a depressed rural economy, so cuts in any of the government services will hit these residents hardest.

Politicians cannot make decisions like businessmen where they only have to consider a financial bottom line.

There is an imperative to consider which includes social, ethical, and environmental bottom lines and treating society as a whole.

Closing services from district courts which serve rural communities, to save money, will only shift the burden to those most vulnerable in society.

That in this case includes defendants, complainants, witnesses, law enforcement officers, local legal staff and lawyers.

The detrimental effects will be felt in social costs such as an increased burden on poorer families already struggling with unemployment.

The Minister uses falling crime statistics in past years to close down courts; but we all know crime rises with recession and the outlook for the future does not indicate a prospering economy.

To the contrary New Zealand’s economy is faltering badly and will worsen in the year ahead.

This serious closure of Dargaville court services will force all manner of victims to travel to Whangarei. Those who can least afford the time, cost, inconvenience and emotional stress.

There will also be increased costs in time and money chasing up those who fail to appear for court.

Cost cutting should not be at the expense of disadvantaging access to justice in rural communities.

Government cuts to services to rural New Zealand weakens the fabric of our society.

Conclusion

This is the thin edge of the wedge – the softening up for full closure of all court services here - for that is the way this governments thinks.

Rather than running a sound economy as this country once did when it was a world leader they persist with their beady eyed, myopic, mindless, monetary policies and make cutback after cutback to try and balance their depleted books.

What’s next – the local hospital?

Provincial New Zealand which is the engine room of our exports, creating wealth for the family New Zealand, is now in the third decade of being ignored.

But you do have an alternative.

Rather than you letting them close down services to you why don’t you close down your electoral support for them.

If you do that then this will be a serious protest meeting which after all is what we are all here for.

If the government thought you were serious, then they would halt these closures today.

Ladies and Gentlemen as John Wayne said “let’s give them to know that our intention is serious”.
--
nzfirst.org.nz | twitter.com/winstonpeters | facebook.com/winstonpeters

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Power Outages, Roads Close: Easter Storm Moving Down Country

The NZ Transport Agency says storm conditions at the start of the Easter break are making driving hazardous in Auckland and Northland and it advises people extreme care is needed on the regions’ state highways and roads.

Winds have gusted up to 98kph on the Auckland Harbour Bridge, there are reports of surface flooding on some sections of the city’s motorway network, and there is debris on several rural roads in both regions.

“Our maintenance crews are keeping roads open, but people need to drive to the conditions – use their headlights, lower their speeds and increase their following distances – for safe travel,” says the Transport Agency’s National Journey Manager, Kathryn Musgrave. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Gordon Campbell: On The Life And ACC Work Of Sir Owen Woodhouse

With the death of Sir Owen Woodhouse, the founding father of the Accident Compensation Scheme, New Zealand has lost one of the titans of its post-war social policy. More>>

ALSO:

Bad Transnationals: Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award

It won the 2011 Roger Award and was runner up in 2012, 2009 and 08. One 2013 nomination said simply and in its entirety: “Blackmailing country”... More>>

ALSO:

Select Committees: Tobacco Plain Packaging Hearings

The Stroke Foundation is today backing the Cancer Society and Smokefree Coalition who are making oral submissions to the Health Select Committee in support of proposed legislation to remove of all branding from tobacco products. More>>

ALSO:

Milk: Oravida Asked For Cabinet Help

New evidence released by New Zealand First today reveals Justice Minister Judith Collins used her position to manipulate the Government to help her husband’s company, Oravida, after the Fonterra botulism scare, says New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters. More>>

ALSO:

With Conditions: Ruataniwha Consents Approved In Draft Decision

The Tukituki Catchment Proposal Board of Inquiry has granted 17 resource consents relating to the $265 million Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme in a draft decision that would open more of the Hawke’s Bay to irrigation. More>>

ALSO:

Fast Lanes, Campervans: Labour 'Making The Holidays Easier For Kiwi Drivers'

The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Royalty And Its Tourism Spin-Offs

Ultimately the Queen’s longevity has been one of her most significant accomplishments. A transition to Prince Charles while the monarchy was in the pits of public esteem in the mid to late 1990s would have been disastrous for the Royal Firm. Far more congenial representatives have now emerged... More>>

ALSO:

Privacy (Again): ACC Demands Excessive Privacy Waivers

Labour: “This is just another example of ACC under National deliberately acting to deny treatment and compensation... Those who did fill in the form have effectively been victims of yet another ACC privacy breach. This time Judith Collins knew it was happening..." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news