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Continued collaboration delivers top results

Hon Judith Collins

Minister of Justice

21 July 2014 Media Statement
Continued collaboration delivers top results

Justice Minister Judith Collins today announced that, in a first for the public sector, the Justice sector has reached and surpassed two of its four Better Public Services targets, three years ahead of schedule.

“Along with the Attorney-General and Ministers of Police, Corrections and Courts, I’m delighted the Justice sector continues to be the leading sector in meeting its BPS targets,” Ms Collins says.

“We’ve been clear that we expect the sector to maintain an unrelenting focus on reducing crime and making New Zealand even safer, and we’re pleased the sector has risen to this challenge.”

The Justice sector BPS targets – which use June 2011 crime levels as a baseline – aim for a 15 per cent reduction in total crime, and a 25 per cent reduction in youth crime by 2017. At 31 March 2014 the total crime rate was down by 16 per cent, and Youth Court appearances were down 30 per cent".

The other BPS target areas are at the half-way mark, with the violent crime rate down 11 per cent (with a target of 20 per cent by 2017), and the reoffending rate down 12.2 per cent (with a target of 25 per cent by 2017).

“The unrelenting efforts and continued collaboration across Justice, Police, Corrections, Courts and support agencies means New Zealand is currently experiencing our lowest crime rate since 1978,” Ms Collins says.

“I acknowledge my ministerial colleagues – Hon Chris Finlayson, Hon Anne Tolley and Hon Chester Borrows – and all those working in the Justice sector for their commitment and dedication to making New Zealand an even safer place.”

Ms Collins says although crime and reoffending rates are trending downwards, the Sector must maintain its focus on reducing crime and reoffending and better supporting victims.

“Our progress to date allows the Sector to renew its focus on protecting those who are most vulnerable – particularly women and children – from abuse.

“This Government has introduced and given effect to a number of law changes to better support and protect victims of domestic violence and sexual violence.

“We have increased the maximum penalty for breaching a protection order from two to three years imprisonment, and broadened the definition of psychological domestic violence to include financial and economic abuse, such as denying or limiting access to financial resources.”

Ms Collins says the Government’s recently announced package to prevent family violence will also help ensure victims remain at the heart of the criminal justice system.

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