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

 


How much is your freedom worth?

How much is your freedom worth?

“JustSpeak is concerned about calls from some groups that Stuart Murray Wilson should be sent back to prison because of the cost of keeping him under his current release conditions. What price do we as New Zealanders place of a person’s liberty and basic human rights?”

“Figures released by the Department of Corrections show that Mr Wilson’s current arrangements have cost $209,313 since he was released just under three months ago, whereas it costs around $100,000 to keep someone in prison for a year. But it is important to remember the reasons why Mr Wilson was released, in particular that he had served his sentence for the crimes he was convicted of and because we have fundamental human rights which protect individuals’ liberty against the power of the State.”

“We have rules against passing news laws to penalise people in ways that didn’t exist when they committed offences, were convicted, and sentenced. It is one of the fundamental principles of the rule of law, which also protects individuals from the disproportionate power of the State, that our laws should not be retrospective. That means that we should be able to know what the law is that applies to us and it should not be able to be changed on us after the event.”

“JustSpeak is concerned that the reactions to the release of these figures and measures such as the proposed Public Protection Orders suggest a lack of willingess from the public to recognise the basic human rights to which all New Zealanders are entitled. These rights must not be worn away – even in response to extraordinary cases.”
“Protecting the public from violent and sexual offenders is of the utmost importance. But there is no evidence that incarceration actually reduces reoffending. It can only protect the public while offenders are locked up and actually increases the likelihood of reoffending after release. If we want a safer community we need to look at alternatives to incarceration – we cannot keep people locked up forever.”

“When it comes to violent and sexual offenders who have served their sentences but are assessed as posing a high risk of reoffending, we need to look at innovative ways to keep the public safe, while protecting the rights of all New Zealanders, including offenders. This also provides an opportunity to look for more cost-effective ways to dealing with high risk offenders.”

“For example, in the United Kingdom Circles of Support and Accountability have been set up. These involve trained volunteers from the community forming a circle around a person with a history of sexual offencding who has a potentially high risk reoffending, and who is about to live in the community. The circle provides both practical and emotional support to the former inmates. It holds them to account and challenges their attempts to rationalise or minimise their offending.”

“Such programmes have the potential for significant long term cost reductions, but also to successfully rehabilitate and reintegrate offenders, and consequently lead to safer communities.”
ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

'Tea Break Bill' Passes: Gordon Campbell On Bad Labour Laws And Poor Safety

By co-incidence, one of the prime dangers of the government’s new employment relations law has been underlined by the release of the death and injury statistics among workers at New Zealand ports. These are highly profitable enterprises for the port owners.

The Port of Tauranga for instance, is expecting its current full-year profit to be between $78 million and $83 million and other ports are enjoying similar boom times – but they are also highly dangerous places for the people who work on or around the port premises. At the Port of Tauranga, there have been 26 serious accidents since 2011, and two deaths. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

No Charges: Outcome Of Operation Clover Investigation

Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls in the Waitemata Police district and wider Auckland area... More>>

ALSO:

UNICEF Report: NZ Cautioned On "Stagnating" Child Poverty

An international report by UNICEF has found that child poverty rates in New Zealand have barely changed since 2008, despite similar sized countries significantly reducing child poverty during the recent recession. More>>

ALSO:

Funding Report: Two Pathways For Transport In Auckland

Commissioned by Auckland Council, the group was asked to investigate two possible pathways for raising $300 million per year ($12 billion over 30 years) to pay for the improvements needed to help fix Auckland’s transport system. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Equity: Equal Pay Win In Court Of Appeal

CTU: The Court of Appeal has made a historic decision paving the way for a substantial equal pay claim for aged care workers. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Finishing Line, And Amazon’s Woes

If the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal wasn’t such a serious matter, this would be pretty funny… More>>

ALSO:

TV3 Video: Three Die On Roads Over Labour Weekend

The official holiday period ended at 6am Tuesday, with three deaths on the roads during the Labour Day weekend. More>>

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news