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Ed Sheeran

Summit to rethink justice direction

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Justice Minister Andrew Little says New Zealand needs to have the guts to look honestly at its slide towards an American-style justice system and fix things so communities are safer.

He has called a criminal justice summit, Hāpaitia Te Ōranga Tangata, at Te Rauparaha Arena in Porirua next month bringing together victims, victims’ advocates, front-line workers with different backgrounds and experience in the criminal justice system and experts in criminal justice.

He has also appointed an advisory panel including leading Maori justice reform advocates.

The Safe and Effective Justice Programme Advisory Group - Te Uepū Hāpai i te Ora, is chaired by former National MP Chester Borrows and includes University of Auckland Professor Tracey McIntosh from Ngai Tuhoe, Victoria University senior law lecturer Dr Carwyn Jones, who has done extensive research on indigenous legal traditions and Julia Whaipooti from Just Speak.

Other members are independent victims’ advocate Ruth Money, Dr Warren Young, Professor Tony Ward, and Dr Jarrod Gilbert.

Mr Little says the group brings together people with practical working experience of the realities of our broken criminal justice system.

He says New Zealand needs less offending, less re-offending, and fewer victims of crime, which means tackling one of the highest re-offending rates in the OECD.

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