National will tackle crime and keep Kiwis safe

Published: Tue 11 Aug 2020 11:01 AM
A National Government will make New Zealand a safe place to live, work and raise a family through effective policies that fight crime, National Party Leader Judith Collins and Justice spokesperson Simon Bridges say.
At the announcement of National’s Law & Order policies in Taupō today, Ms Collins pointed to the party’s proud record of reducing offending, improving community safety and helping break the cycle of intergenerational family violence and abuse.
“National puts victims at the heart of our criminal justice system because we understand that, through no fault of their own, they are often left with deep physical and mental scars,” Ms Collins said.
“Our policy is simple: victims should get justice and criminals should be held accountable for the harm they cause, while also being rehabilitated into contributing members of our society.”
National’s policies to keep New Zealanders safe include:
• Implementing our Social Investment Approach across the justice system by setting clear targets to reduce offending and address the areas of most need
• Significantly expand mental health facilities in policing such as the Watch House Nurse Programme and the Mental Health Co-response initiative
• Change the Victim Notification Register to make it opt-out rather than opt-in
• Tightening border controls through increased searching of containers and mail to prevent drugs coming into the country
• Expanding the use of specialist courts, such as drug and alcohol courts, which help offenders deal with their addiction issues
• Institute a range of policies to target gangs and the harm they cause in communities
• Introducing the Clean Start policy to help newly-released prisoners move to a new community
Mr Bridges said National will focus Government efforts to reduce crime and re-offending by setting clear reduction targets.
“We will use data to identify the areas of greatest need within the justice system and focus on making New Zealand a safer place.”
Under the Labour/NZ First/Green Government, victims of crime have increased by about 17,300 while the number of people on the National Gang List has increased by 34 per cent
“Violent incidences, from a person being shot in a gang fight in Taupō recently to gangs moving into central Wellington, are regularly making our newspapers,” Mr Bridges says.
“Labour’s soft-on-crime attitude has meant more violent criminals are out on our streets and in our communities. That’s resulting in more victims.
“Gangs and organised crime have grown sharply under Labour’s watch. We will give law enforcement the tools and support to disrupt and halt the operations’ of gangs across the country.
“National will respond to the communities’ concerns about the ability of gangs to intimidate the public by banning all gang insignia in public places.
Mr Bridges said New Zealand’s rate of victimisation increased by 6.6 per cent in the 12 months to the end of May, despite the Covid-19 lockdown
“National is committed to keeping Kiwis safe, wherever they go and whatever they do.”

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