Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Prohibition of Gang Insignia in Government Premises Bill

MEDIA RELEASE – For immediate use, 7 November 2012

Prohibition of Gang Insignia in Government Premises Bill could breach rights

The Prohibition of Gang Insignia in Government Premises Bill is inconsistent with the right to freedom of expression protected by the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990, the New Zealand Law Society says.

The Bill prohibits the display of gang insignia in government premises.

Presenting the Law Society’s submission on the Bill to Parliament’s Law and Order Committee today, Robert Hesketh said the Bill should not proceed past select committee stage. If it does proceed, the Law Society recommends that key provisions be redrafted.

Although it does not comment on the policy underlying the Bill, the Law Society believes the Bill is drafted too widely and breaches the right to free expression – as was the case with similar measures enacted in 2009 to prohibit the wearing of gang insignia in the Whanganui District.

The Law Society also believes the Bill is unnecessary. There were already a variety of existing laws covering the actual behaviours the prohibition of gang insignia was designed to address, Mr Hesketh said.

The Law Society says the prohibition would limit a range of free speech, including culturally or politically significant expression which may not be intimidatory or confrontational.

“Gang insignia” is widely defined in the Bill and does not differentiate between displays of insignia that are intended to intimidate or confront, and displays that are not, the Law Society says.

If the Bill is to proceed, the Law Society recommends that the definition of “gang insignia” should include the requirement that the signs, symbols and representations that display gang affiliation would also tend to intimidate the public or incite confrontation between gangs.

The Law Society also recommended the offence should be changed to state that no person may display gang insignia at any time in government premises where such display could reasonably be seen as giving rise to a real risk of the occurrence of intimidation, harassment or intimidation, Mr Hesketh said.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Anne Tolley’s
Callous Folly

Years ago, I remember someone in the Heath Ministry telling me off the record that regulatory oversight in this country largely consisted in ‘waiting for something to turn green or fall off somebody’ before the authorities would swing into action...

Last week’s conflict between Social Development Minister Anne Tolley and District Court judge Carolyn Henwood illustrated quite a few of the flaws in the system. More>>

 

Members’ Bills: Greens' Domestic Violence And Loans Bills Pulled From Ballot

Jan Logie’s Domestic Violence-Victims' Protection Bill introduces workplace protections for victims of domestic violence, including allowing victims to request paid domestic violence leave for up to 10 days... Gareth Hughes’ Bill allows Kiwis with student loans to defer their student loan repayments into a first home savings scheme. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA: Police Did Not 'Deliberately' Use Pepper Spray On 10-Year-Old

"When spraying the man, the officer did not properly consider the necessity of using pepper spray in a confined space, the likelihood that it would affect the other innocent passengers or the fact that he was using a more powerful spray." More>>

ALSO:

Donor Bill Passes: Full Income Compensation For Live Organ Donors

Unanimous cross-party support for the Compensation for Live Organ Donors Bill represents a critical step in reducing the burgeoning waiting list for kidney donations, according to Kidney Health New Zealand chief executive Max Reid. More>>

ALSO:

Earthquake Response: Emergency Legislation Prepared

Three new Bills have been drafted in the wake of the magnitude 7.8 earthquake on November 14 to ensure the government can enable affected communities to respond quickly and efficiently. More>>

ALSO:

Housing MPs: New Building(s) For Parliament

A new building will be erected on Parliament grounds to house Members of Parliament and their staff who currently work in leased accommodation in Bowen House. The plan has cross-Party support, apart from NZ First, said Parliament’s Speaker, Rt Hon David Carter. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news