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

 


Gains in Criminal Justice Sector Leave Māori Behind


14 February 2013
For immediate release

State of the Nation: Gains in Criminal Justice Sector Leave Māori Behind

The Salvation Army’s report on the current state of New Zealand’s social policy, ‘She’ll be Right – A State of the Nation Report’, suggests that gains in the criminal justice sector continue to leave Māori behind.

While the report includes some positive findings such as declining rates of crime, imprisonment, and recidivism, it also shows significant disparity between Māori and non-Māori in criminal justice statistics, that our prison population is 11 percent higher than five years ago, and poor performance in traditional risk factors for criminal activity such as child poverty, education, housing, and unemployment.

JustSpeak is particularly concerned with the disparity between Māori and non-Māori in criminal justice statistics. The Report found that “not only were Māori youth aged 14 to 16 years three times more likely than non-Māori youth to be apprehended for a criminal offence, but they were also more likely to be prosecuted by the Police for their offending … not only has this trend continued during 2011/12 but it may be getting worse.” This is coupled with the disproportionate incarceration of Māori in New Zealand prisons.

However, importantly, this report also draws our attention to the corresponding disparity between Māori and non-Māori in terms of access to early childhood education, rates of unemployment and other measures of social inequality.

JustSpeak released a paper last year demanding that this disparity be addressed with some urgency, innovation and yet with a long-term commitment to meaningful change in the way Māori experience the criminal justice system.

While the Salvation Army’s Report states that the positive findings reflect a shift away from a wholly punitive ‘tough on crime’ approach in the political climate and public discourse, if gains in policing, justice, sentencing and corrections policy are to be maintained it is clear that we need to address the disparity experienced by many New Zealanders.

The reported declining rates of teen pregnancy are positive in terms of sustainably reducing offending because maternal age and education are significant offending risk factors. However, the fact is that 20 per cent of New Zealand children experience poverty, violence against children has increased by 11 per cent, and there remain significant issues in terms of housing, unemployment, and alcohol — and each of these things are barriers to sustainably reducing offending.

Increased use of community-based sentences and a shift away from incarceration toward rehabilitation and reintegration should be encouraged. The Report points to the significant under-reporting of crime, which may reflect the fact that much crime occurs within families and communities, or in circumstances where the current criminal justice system does not provide meaningful resolution. JustSpeak believes this highlights a need for greater use of alternative justice processes, such as restorative justice conferences and drug courts.

Though the Salvation Army’s report shows promising changes to offending and incarceration statistics, policing and sentencing practices, and in public attitudes towards criminal justice, the disparity between Māori and non-Māori undermines New Zealanders’ highly-prized sense of fairness. Until we address wider social deprivation we cannot hope to achieve sustainable reductions in offending in Aotearoa.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Team Behind Trump's Throne

Forget the Putin factor. Daily, the team of charlatans, bigots and stunningly ignorant crackpots that Trump is appointing to head key federal agencies is just as alarming. These are positions with vast power and budgetary discretion over policies that stand to affect tens of millions of vulnerable Americans. Sad! More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On Bill English, Abroad

If David Cameron was the closest thing John Key had to a political mentor, their successors also share a whole lot in common. Theresa May and Bill English were both propelled into the top jobs as the result of unexpected resignations, and without much in the way of credible competition from their colleagues... More>>

ALSO:

Pike River: Labour Bill To Override Safety Act For Mine Entry

“Bill English has been hiding behind the legal excuse that any attempt to re-enter the mine to recover the bodies might place the mine’s owner, Solid Energy Limited, and its directors in breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Populism And Labour 2017

For many people on the centre-left, populism is a dirty word, and a shorthand for the politics of bigotry. In this country, it has tended to be equated with the angry legions of New Zealand First. Who knew they were not just a reactionary spasm, but the wave of the future? More>>

Oxfam: 30% Of NZ Owns Less Wealth Than Our Two Richest Men

The research also reveals that the richest one per cent have 20 per cent of the wealth in New Zealand, while 90 per cent of the population owns less than half of the nation’s wealth. The research forms part of a global report released to coincide with this week’s annual meeting of political and business leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. More>>

ALSO:

Hospitals: Resident Doctors Set To Strike Again

Despite discussions between the DHBs and NZRDA over safer hours for resident doctors progressing during the last week, the strike planned for next week appears set to proceed. More>>

ALSO:

Not So Super Fund: More Burning Ethical Questions For Steven Joyce

Greens: Radio New Zealand reported this morning that the New Zealand Superfund has $77 million invested in 47 coal companies that the Norwegian Government’s Pension Fund – the largest sovereign fund in the world – has blacklisted. More>>

Activism: Greenpeace Intercepts World’s Biggest Seismic Oil Ship

Greenpeace crew have made contact with the world’s biggest seismic oil ship after travelling 50 nautical miles on two rigid-hulled inflatables off the coast of Wairarapa... Greenpeace radioed the master of the Amazon Warrior to deliver an open letter of protest signed by over 60,000 New Zealanders. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: Why Tax Cuts In 2017 Would Be A (Proven) Bad Idea

Ever since the world fell prey to the mullahs of the free market in the 1980s, no amount of real world evidence has managed dispel one key tenet of their economic faith. Namely, the idea that if you cut income taxes and taxes on small business, a wave of individual enterprise and entrepreneurial energy will thus be unleashed, profits will rise and – hey bingo! – the tax cuts will soon be paying for themselves ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
More RSS  RSS
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news