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National’s got it wrong re probation

National’s got it wrong re probation

National MP Tony Ryall is way off the mark with his statements about the Probation Service, PSA national secretary Richard Wagstaff said today.

“Mr Ryall is misleading the New Zealand public when he criticises the Government and the Community Probation Service, using the PSA’s operational safety report on CPS to back up his statements. PSA indicated quite clearly in its report that the genesis of the current problems in Probation lies in consistent underfunding and under-resourcing through the late eighties and nineties – ie. under National Government policies.”

“PSA also indicated quite clearly its acknowledgement of and congratulations for the efforts being made by the present Government to turn the problems around. The recent 20% increase in staffing and injection into staff training is a significant step, and would have been unheard of in National’s day.”

“PSA totally rejects Mr Ryall’s allegation that the Probation Service is not staffed by genuine and committed people. It is the dedication and commitment of our members in the Service which has kept it going through the years under such difficult circumstances.”

Richard Wagstaff said the notion of contracting out the probation service is completely unacceptable and sounds a real warning to the whole state sector that National is sticking to the failed and discredited policies of the past.

“The Government, the PSA, and the Corrections Department are committed to engaging and working together to solve the problems.”

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