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

 

ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte, ACT Headquarters

ACT Leader Dr Jamie Whyte, ACT Headquarters, Newmarket

ACT to Strengthen Rights to Self Defence and Introduce a New Crime for Home Invasion

The following is the speech given by Dr Jamie Whyte at this morning's media conference

***

It is core ACT Party policy that the first duty of the state is to protect the citizen. Successive governments have failed to protect us from violence and property theft.

Other parties are this election attempting take credit for the dramatic fall in violent crime but they can give no reasons for the decline.

This is because the fall in violent crime is due to the success for ACT’s 3 strikes for violent crime policy. Labour and the Greens predicted the policy would result in our prisons being full and they said it would make no difference to the incidence of violence.

Not one person has committed a third violent crime.

The success of 3 strikes proves we can take measures to reduce crime. Even hardened criminals respond to incentives.

Labour and the Greens have announced they will repeal 3 strikes so we can predict the election of the Labour/Green government will result in a dramatic increase in violent crime.

ACT has already announced our policy to reduce burglary by at least a third by setting up a three strikes for burglary crime policy.

We have also announced we want the media to be able to report what is happening in the secretive Youth Court. Justice should not only be done but seen to be done. ACT supports giving name suppression to young offenders but the details of youth justice need to be known.

***

Today I wish to announce two more ACT crime policies that will tackle two serious issues.

ACT will introduce a crime of Home Invasion.

Today, New Zealand has no dedicated home invasion law. ACT recognises the need for such a law because of the sanctity of the home, and the need for New Zealanders to feel especially safe in their own home. Burglary is an invasive crime from which many never fully recover the lost sense of security that should be synonymous with being at home. The crime of Home Invasion is at another level to this and it is hard to imagine how anyone can recover the emotional harm this causes.

Home invasion provisions were legislated for in 1999 by the National Government. However they lasted only a couple of years before the incoming Helen Clark Labour Government repealed them in 2002.

Nothing has changed since then, except for home invasions continuing unabated and seemingly becoming more prevalent. John Key said yesterday that he believes National is on the right track in regard to crime, but ACT is more ambitious for New Zealand than this. We will take New Zealand on a new track.

Anyone convicted of home invasion will face a maximum sentence of twenty five years in prison which will be a separate offence to any others committed during the home invasion.

***

The second policy we are announcing today is to:

Strengthen the rights of New Zealanders to defend themselves.

ACT wants people to feel safer in their own homes and will change the law so that anyone in their own home who fears for their safety at the hands of someone unlawfully in their home will have full rights to defend themselves. They need have no concern that the actions they take during the dreadful moments when they were fearing attack or being attacked will be second guessed in the cool light of the next day by the police or the courts as unreasonable and so face prosecution for defending themselves.

This is a version of the ‘Castle Doctrine’ but is not a blank license to kill or cause serious harm. There will always be the possibility of charges being laid in cases of extreme action, but the onus of proof will be on the police to prove the person who defended themselves did not believe, in their own mind and given the circumstances they were in, that they had to take whatever action they did to defend themselves.

Shop keepers, especially in Auckland, are being subjected to increasing violent robbery. ACT will also strengthen their rights to defend themselves, but the right to defend yourself in a public space or a shop or place of business will be different. There has to be a distinction because the sanctity of the home is deserving of a higher right. Criminals are well aware that shop keepers are defenceless and are taking advantage of this in brutal robberies. What ACT proposes here should reassure the shopkeepers of New Zealand.

ACT says it will not be illegal for a shopkeeper to keep a weapon in their own shop. ACT will only strengthen the law for self-defence and laws relating to protection of property will remain unchanged.

Shopkeepers will enjoy the presumption that the right to defend themselves is paramount and be reassured by the law requiring any decision of the police to prosecute to be automatically reviewed by the Solicitor General before proceeding. Both the decision of the Police and the Solicitor-General to be subject to a specific ‘public interest’ test. This should have a chilling effect on the enthusiasm of the police to prosecute in anything but the most obviously extreme cases.

Successive governments have failed to protect us from violence and property theft. ACT has made a difference with our three strikes for violent offences but more needs to be done and ACT wants to do more now for people who should feel safer in their own home or business premises.

ends


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Rampant Pandering To The Farming Vote

What on earth has happened to the political parties n the centre-right? Once upon a time in the US, the party of Lincoln was a respectable political party before it devolved into the cult of Trump. Here at home, the National Parry used to be able to manage and administer the economic orthodoxy in a reasonably competent fashion. Now it can barely do simple addition and subtraction. Something must have gotten into the water, and not simply out on the farm... More>>

 

Winston Peters Speech: The Gathering Storm Clouds: Ihumatao

Frequently around New Zealand you hear people say that politicians are all the same. It’s a convenient way to dismiss any careful investigation of the truth of that statement. New Zealand First since its inception has been committed to ‘one law ... More>>

ALSO:

National Agriculture Policy: Will Restore Farmer Confidence And Pride

A National Government will reduce regulatory burden and give farmers confidence for the future. Leader of the National Party Judith Collins and Agriculture spokesperson David Bennett announced National’s Agriculture policy in Gisborne today. “Agriculture ... More>>

ALSO:

Shaw: Wealth Tax Not A Bottom Line For Green Party But They Will Push For It

Green Party co-leader James Shaw says one of his senior MPs misspoke under pressure when she said a wealth tax was one of the party's bottom lines. More>>

ALSO:

Government: More Border Exceptions For Critical Roles

The Government has established class exceptions for border entry for a limited number of veterinarians, deep sea fishing crew, as well as agricultural and horticultural machinery operators. “Tight border restrictions remain the backbone of the Government’s ... More>>

ALSO:


Gordon Campbell: On Last Night’s Leaders Debate

Do political debates change voter intentions, and cause voters to switch sides? According to a 2019 Harvard Business School study conducted across 61 elections in nine countries involving 172,000 respondents, the answer would seem to be a resounding ... More>>

ALSO:

Dunne Speaks: The Election Campaign Just Grinds Slowly On And On

With just over three weeks until the General Election, the release of the first major pre-election opinion poll this week confirmed what was already being reported about this year’s campaign. Although the gap between Labour and National has narrowed ... More>>

Electoral Commission: Candidate And Party Lists Released

17 registered political parties and 677 candidates will be contesting the 2020 General Election Nominations have now closed and the Electoral Commission has released the electorate and party list candidates for 2020 online at vote.nz . Advance voting ... More>>

National: Plan To Restore NZ’s Prosperity

National’s Economic and Fiscal Plan carefully balances the need to invest in infrastructure and core public services while also reducing tax pressure on Kiwi families and businesses. National Leader Judith Collins and Finance spokesperson Paul Goldsmith unveiled National’s ... More>>

ALSO:

NZ First: Party List

New Zealand First has a proven twenty-seven-year history of bringing balance and common sense to our government. Amid the continued setbacks of COVID-19 restrictions, New Zealand First has once again sustained its profile by selecting a strong team ... More>>


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 


 

InfoPages News Channels