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Special treatment in our justice system - the real issue

Special treatment in our justice system - the real issue

27 September 2016

We need better, community-based justice responses that are applied and available regardless of whether you are a rugby player, a doctor, or can't even afford to pay for legal representation.

"We should not have differential treatment in our justice system for those who are privileged by their background or our national obsession with rugby" says Julia Whaipooti, Chair of JustSpeak.

We need a system that effectively holds people accountable for their actions. To stop violence, especially violence towards women, we need to challenge violent attitudes and actions and make sure that those victimised are included in the process.

Our justice system does not currently achieve this.

"The reality is that Losi Filipo now has more chance of turning his life around and not harming others again than if he had gone to prison" says Julia Whaipooti.

Prison is not the answer in most cases. It just doesn’t work. It’s not effective at holding people to account and it makes it more likely they will commit further harm against others. "Prison is not tough on crime. It is an incubator for future harm" says Whaipooti.

The latest figures show that despite the Government's targets, re-imprisonment rates are increasing, with 30% of prisoners re-imprisonment within 12 months. This means more, not less, harm in our communities.


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