Law and order reform focused on wellbeing

  • Roll out meth treatment programme to 4,000 more people
  • Establish an Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Court in Hawke’s Bay
  • Expand Māori Pathways prison rehabilitation programme to wāhine Māori
  • Strengthen the Māori, Pacific and Ethnic Services Group within Police

The long-term project to reduce offending and improve rehabilitation will continue under Labour with a commitment to keep our communities safe through smarter law and order initiatives.

“The old ways have failed us over decades,” said Labour Leader Jacinda Ardern.

“We will continue the work started this Parliamentary term to reduce offending, reduce victimisation, tackle the root causes of crime and enhance community safety and wellbeing.

“We will rollout Northland’s Te Ara Oranga meth harm pilot to other regions. It will be available to 4,000 more people in regions like the East Coast and Bay of Plenty where meth use is high.

“Te Ara Oranga is a partnership between Police and the District Health Board. It reduces supply through targeted enforcement, and reduces demand by steering drug users into recovery and treatment programmes and helping them find work.

“The valuable work of Iwi Liaison Officers and Ethnic Liaison Officers within Police will also be strengthened as we keep working to reduce victimisation and offending and better support community safety.

“The 15 per cent growth in Police numbers over the past three years has enhanced the diversity of the organisation and created a workforce to better reflect the demographics of the communities it serves,” said Jacinda Ardern.

“Thirty years of locking more people up for longer has not made communities safe and has resulted in a reoffending rate of 61 percent” said Labour’s Justice Spokesperson Andrew Little. “We need to break the cycle of re-offending, and to do that we must tackle the drivers of crime.”

“Victims still struggle to have their voice heard in the criminal justice system and we will work to strengthen their place and ensure their voices are heard.

“Alcohol, drug use, and addiction cause major harm to our communities and can often be the cause of recidivist offending. That’s why we will establish an Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Court in Hawke’s Bay,” Andrew Little said.

“Māori women have high rates of incarceration and the numbers are climbing, but our corrections system has largely been built around the needs of male offenders,” Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis said.

“We know women respond differently to treatment and management and that many women in prison have complex histories of trauma, mental health and addiction issues, family violence and poverty that contribute to their offending.

“We need to give women in prison the treatment, skills and support they need to shape better futures for themselves, their children and families. That’s why Labour will implement Wāhine Māori Pathways, starting with Christchurch Women’s Prison.

“This is about building better outcomes for women in prison, improving rehabilitation and reintegration and breaking the intergenerational cycle of Māori reoffending so there are fewer victims of crime,” Kelvin Davis said.

“Thanks to record growth in Police numbers in the past three years, we have been able to go hard against gangs and organised crime networks. Enforcement agencies are disrupting meth supply chains and seizing the proceeds of crime,” said Police spokesperson Stuart Nash.

“We will keep up the momentum of growth in Police numbers to match population growth. The ratio of Police to population improved from 1 fulltime officer per 541 population at 30 June 2017, to 1:496 at February 2020. 

“Enhanced diversity also enables Police to better support communities through the work of specialist liaison officers. By strengthening this work we will support the Treaty commitment to work in partnership and build trust and confidence in Police, to reduce victimisation and reoffending,” said Stuart Nash.

The law and order initiatives will involve additional investment of $59 million over four years.


Fact sheet