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Dumb – Clayton – Dumb

Dumb – Clayton – Dumb

The Sensible Sentencing Trust, Wellington branch, would like to express our disappointment with the content of Labour’s police and corrections policy release ahead of the upcoming general election.

Despite an opportunity to reflect from the opposition benches since 2008 and come up with fresh ideas, what we are hearing from Clayton Cosgrove is more of the same from the Clark era; when Labour largely ignored the overwhelming support for Norm Withers referendum and the public call for tougher sentencing. Perhaps this is unsurprising coming from a washed-up politician short on initiative and seemingly out-of-touch with community sentiment on serious offending.

Remember William Bell, the RSA triple murderer? Remember Graham Burton, who went on a shooting rampage in Lower Hutt murdering Karl Kuchenbecker along the way? These crimes horrified ordinary kiwi’s and yet Labour would remove the 3-strikes legislation that aims to keep these, the very worst career criminal serious offenders in prison. 3-strikes may act as a deterrent, but first and foremost it helps keep us safe.

New Zealand once was, and can be again, one of the safest countries in the world if we have the will and determination to stand up against crime and refuse to accept it as a part of our lives. We all have a right to be safe within our own homes, streets, and communities. We will continue to fight for that right and advocate for a tough stance to be taken against those who would have those rights taken away from us.

Shame on you Labour for attacking our right to safety within our own communities.

By taking a soft approach to crime you devalue the hundreds of thousands of kiwi’s who have been victims of crime in the past year alone, and particularly those of us who have been victims of serious violence or sexual assault. Your policy chooses to put the interests of criminals ahead of the rights of victims.

It is the victims in this country who currently carry the can for our criminal element and it is the responsibility for our politicians to address this.

Finally, I would pose this question: On his personal website Cosgrove proudly states he is an associate member of the RSA. I wonder just how many RSA members and the families of the victims of the RSA murders feel comfortable about having Cosgrove associated with their organisation whilst talking about soft punishments and the removal of 3-strikes? I suspect it would be few.


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