Fostering strong and effective community intervention processes was among the ideas raised by Kiwis at a key public meeting this week.
The Safe and Effective Justice Advisory Group – Te Uepū Hāpai i te Ora hosted the final (and 28th) Public Conversation Session at the New Lynn Community Centre in West Auckland.
The public conversation session is the last of the broad public consultation sessions that made up the ‘listening to understand’ phase of the engagement programme, before the independent advisory group Te Uepū present the nation’s feedback, ideas and initiatives to the Minister.
Chair of Te Uepū Chester Borrows says the ideas raised broadly reflected what the group had been hearing across New Zealand, alongside a general willingness to see reform of the criminal justice system.
“One of the stronger messages we heard was the role of communities in intervening when there are problems at an early stage, especially where we can steer a younger person away from the criminal justice system when better alternatives are appropriate.
“I had a sense that the community spirit in West Auckland came through strongly. These calls were alongside understandings that the system needs to better respond to the needs of victims and Maori, which echoes the messages we’ve heard around New Zealand.”
Still to come is a Pasifika Fono in 29 March, and the Hui Māori: Ināia Tonu Nei in Rotorua on 5 April.
The events are aimed at improving the processes and outcomes for Pasifika and Māori within our criminal justice system. These will be the final events before Te Uepu makes their recommendations to the Minister and marks the conclusion of the first phase of the Safe and Effective Justice – Te Uepū Hāpai i te Ora programme.