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

 


Unreliable Ministry Figures a Smokescreen

Media Release 20 December 2012


Unreliable Ministry Figures a Smokescreen


“Figures showing a reduction in Community Law clients are just plain wrong and are being used as a smokescreen at a time when decisions are being made on Community Law’s future funding”, says Liz Tennet, CEO of Community Law Centres o Aotearoa (CLCA), the national body representing 24 Community Law Centres around New Zealand.

Statistics released by the Ministry of Justice show a decline of 37,356 in client numbers from June 2009 to June 2012.

“The figures are absolute rubbish”, says Ms Tennet. “At a time of economic recession, the number of clients being assisted by the 24 Community Law Centres has actually gone up”.

“What the Ministry figures don’t count are a significant numbers of clients given assistance over the phone, and the half million hits per year from New Zealanders seeking information off the Community Law website, http://www.communitylaw.org.nz/

“But what is most disturbing is the unreliability of the Ministry’s own database and the Ministry–directed changes over the last four years to the way Community Law Centres must record their statistics. In 2009 the figures included website hits, in 2012 they do not. In 2009 the figures included pamphlet and leaflet distribution at expos and shows, in 2012 they do not.

“The Ministry’s database is a dog. It is now over 7 years old, it has been very difficult to amend entry errors, it has created inaccuracies and it has caused immense frustration to the sector. The Ministry has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars upgrading the database, but it is no longer fit for purpose.

“One of New Zealand’s 24 Community Law Centres, Community Law Wellington and Hutt Valley, submitted to MoJ its final Quarterly Reports each year showing the following number of clients assisted:-

• 2009 – 4424 clients

• 2010 – 5242 clients

• 2011 – 6061 clients

• 2012 – 6522 clients


“These numbers show no relevance to the numbers recently released by MoJ off their database. The Ministry numbers are patently wrong.

“The Ministry itself has acknowledged the unreliability of its database and has agreed there needs to be introduced a new client management system for Community Law. This has been agreed by a joint Ministry/Community Law Working Party.

“Community Law has had no funding increase over the last four years and through efficiency gains has decreased its average cost of service delivery from $95.36 per hour in 2008/09 to $70.41 per hour in 2011/12. This has been delivered as a result of a substantial increase in the number of service delivery hours.

“Community Law also delivers huge value. 1200 volunteer lawyers massively expand Community Law’s footprint and provide additional value of $3.8m per year. Community Law Casework alone is valued at $36.23m per year and Community Law’s early intervention service has been estimated to save at least $7.3m per year of taxpayer court costs from just a 1% reduction in the use of courts.

“The Ministry of Justice is demonstrating itself as another Government Agency with deficient data collection”, says Ms Tennet.


ends


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

More Evidence - Scoop Press Conference Recordings:
PM's Post-Cab Presser 8/8/11
"at that point [Tucker] told me he'd release it ..."

Hager Revelations: Inquiry Into NZSIS Release Of Goff Docs

The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security (IGIS), Cheryl Gwyn, announced she would be instituting an inquiry concerning allegations that the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZSIS) might have released official information to Mr Cameron Slater, regarding briefings provided to the then Leader of the Opposition, for political purposes...

“I am satisfied there is a sufficient public interest justifying the commencement of an own-motion inquiry into the substance of the issues raised with my Office,” said Ms Gwyn. More>>

Goff: Director’s Letter Contradicts Key’s Claims

At yesterday’s media standup, when asked on the topic John Key said ‘I wasn’t told’...
“In a letter dated November 2011 former SIS director Warren Tucker states three times that ‘in accordance with the usual practice of keeping the minister informed’ the Prime Minister had been told. More>>


 

Parliament Today:

Schools, PPTA Sign Up: Primary Teachers And Principals Vote Down Govt Plan

Teachers and principals have voted overwhelmingly against the Government’s controversial “Investing in Educational Success” policy, including proposed highly-paid principal and teacher roles. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Usual Round Of Mud Slinging And Name-Calling

This week gave an interesting example of how hard it is to untangle the reality from the slanging matches. The issue that emerged early this week could hardly be more important. Does the government intend to cut spending in health, education and on the environment if re-elected, or not? More>>

Earlier:

Electionresults.co.nz: National and NZ First Rise in Roy Morgan Poll

National has bounced back in the latest Roy Morgan Poll but the big winner has been New Zealand First who rise to their highest level of support since September 2013. More>>

ALSO:

Fish Pun Warning: By Hoki! It’s Labour’s Fisheries Policy

A Labour Government will protect the iconic Kiwi tradition of fishing by improving access to the coast, protecting the rights of recreational fishers and reviewing snapper restrictions, Labour’s Fisheries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. More>>

ALSO:

It's Official: Governor General Gives Direction To Conduct Election

The Governor General has signed the writ directing the Electoral Commission to conduct the General Election on 20 September 2014. This is the formal authority to run the 2014 election, and enables candidate nominations to open tomorrow Thursday 21 August 2014. More>>

Gordon Campbell: No More Mr Nice Guy

When future historians seek to identify the exact moment when the prime ministerial career of John Key hit the downward slope, they may well point to Key’s interview yesterday with Guyon Espiner on RNZ’s Morning Report. More>>

ALSO:

Dirty (Politics) Weekend: Collins’ Admission Reason For Key To Act

"Despite claiming that the evidence about her in Nicky Hager's book was ‘false’ Judith Collins has now been forced to admit that she did send information about a Ministerial Services staff member to Cameron Slater for him to use in a baseless smear campaign. More>>

ALSO:

Potential Disasters: Underground Coal Fire On Denniston Plateau

Forest & Bird says one or more coal fires have broken out beneath the Denniston Plateau, and that the Department of Conservation (DOC) must stop Bathurst Resources’ preparatory mining work going on there until the fire or fires are extinguished. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news