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Goff Fails on Pre-Election Promise to Victims

Tony Ryall National Justice Spokesman

12 December 2000

Goff Fails on Pre-Election Promise to Victims

The Victims Rights Bill SOP tabled today doesn't measure up to Mr Goff's pre-election promises, National's Justice spokesman Tony Ryall said today.

"Mr Goff promised one thing, and delivers another.

"In one of his vein-popping speeches, Mr Goff promised Parliament that Labour would make every discretionary right an enforceable right.

"He said 'it is time to change the 'shoulds and the 'mays' in the Act to 'must'. The rights of victims need to be entrenched and have the ability to be legally enforced'. (Hansard 19646 5 Oct 1999)

"But what features in the two key 'rights' for Treatment and Access to Services (clauses 6 and 7)? The word 'should'. No 'must', no 'will' but 'should'.

"Mr Goff seeks to hide his inconsistency and criticism from Victim Support, by asking the government-controlled select committee to consider the issue.

"National will, of course, support the SOP.

"But like his promises on tougher sentences and bail conditions Mr Goff shows he says one thing before the election and another afterwards.

"He is now Minister of Justice. He makes the decisions. He should keep his word," Mr Ryall said.

ENDS

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