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Kiwi Party Law and Order Policy

10 comments | 3:37 pm | top |
The Kiwi Party has just released their law and order policy, which I have copied below, with my comments in blue. Click here to download the policy. As you can see, we hardly see things the same, though there are areas where I can agree with their policy.

Law
  • Return the minimum drinking age back to 20.
  • It has been a mistake to lower the legal drinking age while simultaneously increasing the availability of alcohol. It is time to reverse this social experiment and work on reducing the access young people have to alcohol while imposing tougher sentences on parents and others who supply alcohol illegally to minors.
    Nope. There is nothing wrong with alcohol, it is when people misuse it that we have a problem. Harsher sentencing for drunkeness in public, or crime committed while under the influence would be a far better move than the far-too easy option of simply criminalising all young people.

  • Those convicted for murder and the manufacture and sale of Class A drugs should be locked up for the course of their natural life.
  • No parole should be considered for a minimum of 20 years and then only if the public safety is not threatened by the prisoners release due to confirmed rehabilitation within the prison system or old age.
    I'm not sure if selling drugs should necessarily be a criminal offence. But those convicted of murder - and where there is crystal clear evidence, including witnesses should be put to death. Parole is just a joke, and as for the public being safe from prisoners out on parole, well just take a look in your newspaper for evidence why this does not work.

  • Criminalise the buying of the services of a prostitute on the street and re-criminalisation of ‘living off the proceeds of the prostitution of others’.
  • Studies prove that legalising prostitution has not solved the social issues it creates. Cities like Amsterdam famous for liberal sex trade laws are now reverting back to criminalizing the sex trade.
    Since the Prostitution Reform Act was passed in 2003, the number of prostitutes does not appear to have increased in New Zealand. Individuals should be free to make agreements between each other, and the State probably does not need to interfere at this level. As for soliciting on the street, at the very least, prostitutes should have to aquire a license as do other street vendors. And even then, licenses should be granted only in certain situations and vicinities.

  • Hold a binding referendum on New Zealand’s attitude to the sale of sexual services.
  • A nation’s law should reflect the will of the people. A referendum will reflect the values and will of the people, which government must respect.
    A referendum probably wouldn't hurt. Legalising something such as prostitution may result in that thing becoming normalised. However there is a huge different between a potentially harmful activity being legalised, and that activity being actively endorsed as a viable career option. It's a real tough one.

Policing
  • Change drug policy from harm minimisation to harm elimination.
  • A multi-pronged strategy is needed to overcome a problem that has its roots in social orientation but ends in crime. Research shows that faith based and community centered models run by those with experience and neighborhood connections deliver the best results. The Kiwi Party would promote successful community coalitions, drug testing within workplaces and schools, screening and intervening to interrupt the cycle of drug abuse, providing quality drug treatment services and establishing drug treatment courts.
    We can't eliminate harm, we can only ever attempt to minimise it. Drug-use in public, in schools or in the workplace is obviously innapropriate. Government funding of community initiatives which encourage people to give up their drug-habit would definitely be a step in the right direction.

  • Introduce separate identification of police and traffic safety officers.
  • While acknowledging two forces share some common concerns and so need to retain strong connections, with regards to public perception and police effectiveness, the Kiwi Party would initiate differing uniforms and patrol cars.
    Sounds like a good plan. Seperate the two jobs and privatise the traffic policing for a start.

  • Establish a special task force to address the rising level of gang related criminal activity.
  • The Police Association has been calling for this task force for several years. The Kiwi party fully supports this.
    Sounds fine.

  • Establish a uniformed voluntary policing force.
  • Establishing a uniformed voluntary policing force of retired persons similar to Maori wardens to help support police by attending to routine work and also assisting in being the “eyes and ears” in every community. We support communities who take initiative to care for themselves.
    Sounds fine.

Corrections
  • Increase the number of addiction recovery and detox facilities.
  • It is estimated that 27% of our youth over 15 years of age are using drugs. Many good parents are eager to place their children into programmes but cannot because of a lack of facilities. While it is difficult to rehabilitate a drug user who does not want to change, anyone convicted of a crime committed while on drugs should first be required to undergo treatment that completely eliminates drugs from their body and maintains them in a drug free environment for a period of time. Those then choosing further help on the road to recovery can be referred to appropriate services. Those refusing treatment may find themselves in prison as a consequence.

    It is imperative that our prisons become drug free. If the Government run Department of Corrections cannot achieve this, the Kiwi Party supports establishing a task force to investigate how this can be attained through the transfer of our prisons management to private contractors as has happened in other nations with circumstances similar to ours.
    Compulsory drug-rehab for prisoners sounds like a good plan.

  • No home detention and no parole for those convicted of serious violent crimes.
  • Society should not risk the re-offending of those who have committed heinous crimes. A system of recognizing and rewarding a prisoner that is making progress in rehabilitation and overcoming their violence should be established within prison walls before release and not in the community.
    Of course! Serious and violent or not - if you do the crime, you do the time.

Justice
  • Establishment of night Courts.
  • There is a huge backlog of cases that could be heard and processed by night Courts. Criminals need to be confronted with efficient and rapid convictions for their behaviour rather than spending months and years going through the revolving door, being charged, then released on bail thus creating the possibility for re-offence before they are sentenced. Also the lives of the innocent are put on hold before they are acquitted of false charges. Night courts would also avoid the disruptions to work and other commitments of those involved.
    That sounds like ACT policy, released about two months ago. Good policy.

  • Ensure there are powers for Judges to pursue truth.
  • The goal of our justice system should be to reveal truth. A criminal should not be allowed to get away with a crime through hiring a lawyer with an ability to abuse a loop-hole or the short comings of a defence attorney with an overloaded schedule. If common sense deems it feasible to further investigate a situation, a Judge should have the means to do so.
    That sounds a bit draconian, pragmatic. Common-sense is a dangerous term.

    Judges should also have the power to award against the Crown, the costs of a person charged and found not guilty. Otherwise our justice system is creating victims of those being wrongly accused.
    Absolutely.

  • Victims rights before criminals rights.
  • All victims of property crime should be entitled to full restitution and the awarding of costs along with an appropriate apology. This is natural justice.
    Not just full restitution, repayment should be made two-fold or three-fold. As for the apology, it's not up to the state to force people to apologise to each other.

  • Imprisonment for property offending should be confined to a small number of the most serious cases.
  • Imprisonment costs the taxpayer around $90,000 per annum and removes the capacity of the offender to recompense the victim – and adds costs to the State if the offender’s family requires welfare.
    That's why prisoners should pay their way through prison. Why should the taxpayer be hit with the bill?

  • Compulsory DNA testing for all those convicted of crimes.
  • It has always been accepted that a convicted criminal be fingerprinted and records be kept for future identification. Advancement of technology has made DNA samples an improved alternative.
    No problem with this.

  • No bail for those being charged with serious violent offences.
  • Of course not.

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10 Comments:

Blogger Simeon said...

Andy can you please explain to me where you get the information that there has been no increase in the number of prostitutes on the street. And can you find out where they got their information from.

11:16 am, July 14, 2008 
Blogger Andy Moore said...

Thanks for your question Simeon. I referred to the Report of the Prostitution Law Review Committee on the Operation of the Prostitution Reform Act 2003, page 13 and paragraph 4 reads:

"A comparison between the number of sex workers in Christchurch in 1999 and 2006 shows that the total has stayed approximately the same over that period. The study does not indicate that there has been any increase in the number of street-based sex workers in Christchurch over that period, contrary to some public perceptions."

It appears that they have only got data for Christchurch - but they look at some other data and say that it matches up, and that on the whole, prostitution in NZ has not increased as a result of the PRA.

11:27 am, July 14, 2008 
Blogger Simeon said...

Why do you trust this report but not the report on smacking?

12:45 pm, July 14, 2008 
Blogger Andy Moore said...

Good question mate. You will notice I said "does not appear to have increased". I am somewhat sceptical, but you have to go with the info that's available to you.

12:48 pm, July 14, 2008 
Blogger Simeon said...

So was it a good thing that prostitution was decriminalised?

1:08 pm, July 14, 2008 
Blogger Andy Moore said...

...or, should it have been a crime in the first place?

Haven't got a definite answer to that one, but I'm inclined to think not - in our present situation.

1:53 pm, July 14, 2008 
Blogger Simeon said...

Andy, my point is that we need standards in society. Moral Standards. If we do not stand by these then the whole of society suffers. We need to be able to stand up and say "that is wrong" or "that is right". Breakdown of society begins when we begin to ask ourselves "what is right and wrong" or "It's a real tough one".

We need to stand up for what is morally right. I think the Kiwi Party's policy is sensible. It is criminalising the buyer not the seller.

3:12 pm, July 14, 2008 
Blogger Andy Moore said...

Absolutely we need standards!

I'm not for a minute saying that prostitution is a good thing, or that it's a tough decision as to whether it is ok or not.

Prostitution is evil, and God hates it.

However, the problem comes when we try and decide if the Government should legislate against it. The Government needs to enforce some moral standards, sure, but at other times it is best to leave the decision up to individuals.

3:22 pm, July 14, 2008 
Blogger Simeon said...

Ok I agree to a certain extent Andy, but this government has meddled in people's lives to such an extent that shouldn't we be asking the question "Should it be up to the government to decide whether to enforce moral standards?"

3:35 pm, July 14, 2008 
Blogger Andy Moore said...

I don't think we should ask that question. It is a government's job to enforce some moral standards.

I know what you mean - a government can be on an agenda (like our is), and push ahead with all manner of "reforms", while all the time destroying the nation.

So that raises a monster of a question, what moral standards do we want to base our laws on?

Common sense? Majority rules? The Bible?

3:38 pm, July 14, 2008 

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