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


Māori mental health expert to speak at anti-prison rally

University of Otago mental health expert Dr. Keri Lawson-Te Aho will be speaking at a rally organised by People Against Prisons Aotearoa (PAPA) in Wellington to oppose the building of a 600 bed unit for Waikeria prison.

She will be joined by prominent human rights lawyer Gayaal Iddamalgoda, who ran as an independent candidate for Wellington Central last year on a platform for migrant and refugee rights.

“This prison won’t be ready for use for another 4 years,” says PAPA spokeswoman Kate McIntyre. “It’s not an emergency response to overcrowding. It only shows the Government’s lack of commitment to following through on its election promise and reducing the prison population.”

“Almost a third of people currently in prison are awaiting trial or sentencing and about half of those won’t be sentenced to any time in prison,” says McIntyre. “By repealing the Bail Amendment Act, more than a thousand people could be released.”

“The plans for expansion show that the Government has very little interest in legislative change. It would rather spend $750 million on a new prison than release people who haven’t even been found guilty of anything or who would be eligible for parole if they had an address to be paroled to.”

PAPA is especially concerned about the inclusion of a mental health unit. According to University of Auckland sociologist Ti Lamusse, the suicide rate in prisons is 6 times higher than outside.

“Imprisoning people, subjecting them to daily violence and degradation, and keeping them locked away from their families damages them more,” says McIntyre.

“Mentally ill people shouldn’t be put into prisons. Community support and therapy is far better for everyone involved. Prisons are the least therapeutic and rehabilitative place they could go.”

“The proposed mental health unit is nothing more than a new asylum.”

The rally will take place outside Parliament, on Tuesday 19th of June at 1pm. Speakers include Māori mental health expert Dr. Keri Lawson-Te Aho, human rights lawyer Gayaal Iddamalgoda, and PAPA organiser from Ngāti Maniapoto, Rei-Marata Goddard.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Joseph Cederwall: Ten reasons to have hope for a better Media in the future

Last week, I wrote about the news crisis in 2018 and why there is hope for journalism despite of (or perhaps because of) this dire situation. This piece will explore what exactly gives us hope at Scoop and will outline some tangible projects and approaches to dealing with this crisis that Scoop is looking to explore in the coming months - years. From tech innovations such as the blockchain, AI and VR, to increased collaboration between newsrooms and new community ownership models, there is plenty of reason for hope.

So, here are ten reasons to have hope for a better media in 2018 and beyond: More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The EU Trade Talks With NZ

In the very unlikely event that all will be smooth sailing in negotiating access to Europe for agricultural products from this part of the world, the EU/NZ negotiations could be wrapped up in about two years – which is relatively fast when it comes to these kind of deals. At best then, we won’t see any concrete benefits until half way through the next term of government. More>>


World Refugee Day: What 7 Former Refugee Kids Love About New Zealand

RASNZ asked 7 members of their specialist youth service (along with two staff members who work with refugee background youth) how they felt about New Zealand – and filmed the responses. More>>


Pay Equity Settlement: Affects 5000 Mental Health Support Workers

Health Minister Dr David Clark is pleased to announce an estimated 5,000 mental health and addiction support workers will soon receive the same pay rates as care and support workers. More>>


DHBs: Nurses Plan Strike Action For Next Month

Nurses across the country have confirmed a notice of a 24-hour strike, starting on 5 July. District Health Boards (DHB) were working on contingency plans following a notice to strike by the New Zealand Nurses Organisation. More>>


Oranga Tamariki: Children's Ministry Shifts Away From Putting Kids In Care

Children's Minister Tracey Martin is signalling a shift away from putting children into care, and towards intensive intervention in a child's home. More>>


But No Way To Tell Why: Significant Drop In HIV Diagnoses

A new report shows that for the first time since 2011, the number of annual HIV diagnoses in New Zealand has fallen. But without funding for a repeat of ongoing surveys to monitor changes in behaviour, testing and attitudes, health workers can’t be sure what’s driving the decrease. More>>


On Her Majesty's Public Service: Inquiry Into Spying Claims Extended To All Govt Agencies

In March, State Services Commissioner Peter Hughes announced an inquiry after it was revealed the firm spied on Canterbury earthquake claimants for Southern Response. The inquiry was furthered widened to include the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, who had been spying on Greenpeace staff. More>>





Featured InfoPages