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Ed Sheeran

Community, not guns needed for high impact policing

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Hauraki Waikato MP Nanaia Mahuta says community policing, not cops with guns is the way to tackle rising levels of violent and drug-related crime.

National Party leader Judith Collins is calling for the sacking of Police Minister Poto Williams and the return of police armed response teams to address increases in gun violence.

Ms Mahuta says the trials of the armed teams in South Auckland and Waikato had mixed reviews both about their effectiveness and the message they sent communities.

She says police need a broad toolkit to deal with the challenges they face, especially around the prevalence of drugs in many small communities.

"We need greater community policing and I want to applaud the efforts of our Police Minister who is trying to ensure we have more Māori and Pacific police officers because we know the impact that can have within communities and we have to go to the community level to get the impact," Ms Mahuta says.

Māori wardens can also be part of the mix to deescalate situations and reach into communities.

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