New Zealand Law Society - Criminal justice reform advisory group and Summit announced

Criminal justice reform advisory group and Summit announced

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Justice Minister Andrew Little has announced an advisory group to look at changes to New Zealand's criminal justice system.

The Safe and Effective Justice Programme Advisory Group – Te Uepū Hāpai i te Ora - will work with justice sector agencies on "a prudent and realistic scope" for effective criminal justice reform, Mr Little says.

The group will be chaired by retired National MP and Cabinet Minister Chester Borrows.

Other members are Ruth Money (independent volunteer victim advocate), Julia Whaipooti (senior advisor at the Children's Commission and a JustSpeak spokesperson), Dr Warren Young (General Manager, Independent Police Conduct Authority), Professor Tony Ward (School of Psychology, Victoria University of Wellington), Professor Tracey McIntosh (Director of the Centre of Research Excellence and Associate Professor in sociology at the University of Auckland and a JustSpeak Board Member), Dr Carwyn Jones (senior law lecturer, Victoria University of Wellington) and Dr Jarrod Gilbert (senior lecturer in sociology, University of Canterbury).

Mr Little says the advisory group bring together people with practical experience of "the realities of our broken criminal justice system".

The advisory group is required to report back to the Minister in early 2019.

Criminal Justice Summit announced

Andrew Little has also announced a Criminal Justice Summit, Hāpaitia Te Oranga Tangata, the Safe and Effective Justice Programme from 20 to 22 August.

This will be launched at Parliament by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on 20 August, with the remainder of the summit being held at Te Rauparaha Arena in Porirua.

“Real change means we have to do things differently. The Summit provides a start to honest conversations as a country, supported by real evidence. The Summit will bring together victims, victims’ advocates, front-line workers with different backgrounds and experience in the criminal justice system, and experts in criminal justice," Mr Little says.

“Hāpaitia Te Oranga Tangata is about having the guts to look honestly at our slide towards an American-style justice system, and fixing things so we can have safer Kiwi communities.”

A special website has been established to provide information about the Summit.