New Zealand Labour Party

Bill English fails to show real leadership

Bill English is following rather than leading on the issue of safe communities with his promise of more Police, says Labour Leader Andrew Little.

“National is playing desperate catch-up after we backed him into a corner.

“We recognised there was a crime problem last October which is why we promised 1000 sworn Police officers.

“For eight years National has failed to invest in our Police force and support front line Police officers.

“He refused Judith Collin’s plea for more Police as Finance Minister. In May last year he signed off on a four year freeze on Police numbers. Now lo and behold 233 days to the election, comes this promise

“Labour welcomes more Police, but National had to be dragged kicking and screaming to today’s announcement.

“What this really shows is a Government that has run out of ideas. They are out of touch.

“This was supposed to be his first major speech as Prime Minister. But what we actually got was a skinny version of a Labour policy and no mention of the housing crisis, the single biggest worry facing thousands of New Zealanders who are struggling to afford their first home.

“This was a speech desperately lacking energy. It was woefully short on vision for this country. It’s time for a fresh approach. It’s time to change the Government,” says Andrew Little.