In just 7 words did Andrew Little demolish real prison reform?

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“It’s not that much of a priority,” he said.

It’s.

Not.

That.

Much.

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Of.

A.

Priority.

Were those the 7 words that just destroyed this Government’s reform of prisons?

It was Andrew Little referring to the outrageously nasty removal of prisoner voting rights by National and the Supreme Court ruling that removing voting rights for Prisoners was contrary to the Bill of Rights.

National removed voting rights to play to the get tough on crime brigade, it was spiteful and simply a means to denigrate and rob prisoners of any semblance of civic rights. The Supreme Court ruled in favour of TDBs Prisoner Rights Blogger, Arthur Taylor, however the ruling doesn’t force Parliament to do anything and rather than acknowledge Prisoners have basic human rights despite incarceration, Little’s kicked for touch so as to not infuriate NZs easily angered sensible sentencing lynch mob.

Look at the way Talkback Radio and Breakfast TV hosts are going into a feeding frenzy over a nothing story like Karel Sroubek, if Andrew had acknowledged the need for immediate legislative change Duncan Garner may have gone full lone suicide bomber while Mike Hosking would need to be heavily medicated.

So smart politics to play to the angriest and most easily upset elements off society, but to also shrug off the crucial point that prisoners do have human rights regardless of imprisonment actually cuts to the very heart of the issues Little is attempting to force change on.

Perhaps if he hadn’t spent so much time on pie in the sky NGOs advocating for no prisons in the Utopian Future of Woke NeverNever land, he’d have more political capital to play with now it matters.

 

 

19 COMMENTS

  1. Prisoners MUST have voting rights!…It is a human right!.

    They are often those at the tail end of society who have been abused. They are acutely aware of what is wrong with society.

    Pretty GUTLESS not to Remedy this situation where they are denied the right to vote…something which Andrew Little could easily do

    • I don’t see why prisoners should be allowed to vote. They forfeit a number of rights when they are incarcerated – voting be one of them. At a practical level, if prisoners vote in the electorate in which they are imprisoned then they may form a fairly important voting block in a close run election. Do we really want our politicians pitching for the votes of criminals?

      • So you want prisoners to be alienated further from society? How do you think that will help re-integration into society if we isolate them from social responsibilities like voting?

        And is that yuour main fear – that “if prisoners vote in the electorate in which they are imprisoned then they may form a fairly important voting block in a close run election”? In other words, Johnpo, you’re afraid they may vote for someone you don’t support.

      • @JOHNPO2002 So I take it you don’t believe in human rights then?

        It’s pretty rare to find someone who is prepared to admit that in public – and has been so for several generations. I guess under the principles of free speech you have the right to take that position but you’re really in a minority there

      • I don’t see why Kiwis overseas should be allowed to vote – you know, people in the military and diplomatic corps. I mean, well, they’re out of it, aren’t they? Sometimes for a year or more. Why do they get this right?

        Though I suppose if we can send them voting papers, for their homebase electorate, maybe, just maybe, we could do the same for prisoners?

        ‘Just sayin’ ‘

        😉

  2. Taking away a prisoner’s right to vote is a pretty clear message that society is doing more than just turning its back on them, it is a giant act of exclusion and makes a mockery of all the little attempts the system makes to pretent that on release the prisoner is expected to become included in our society again.
    Give them their voting right again, these people are acutely aware of how the world is structured, rightly and wrongly.

  3. Is Andrew Little stupid ( or still with his National Party roots)

    ….most prisoners would vote Left ( Labour )rather than Right (National) because it is the Left which is generally for social justice and egalitarianism

  4. So a murderer who has removed the victims right to vote is given the chance to vote.You should need to respect your place in society before you earn the right to vote for its future

    • Voting rights for prisoners are not extended to homicide perpetrators. Sentences or 3 years or less get voting rights. Lifers no.

    • I do beg your pardon!

      “You should need to respect your place in society before you earn the right to vote”

      I had no idea! none!, that we still had such a notion as ‘place in society’ outside the covers of an historical novel. How deliciously retro!

      ‘earn the right to vote’? How? Born here. Live here 18 years. Remind the Orange Being of where you live and you’ve made it, so far, through the perils of adolescence, and there you go. Oh. And unlike some feckless and idle older citizens, actually turn up and USE that right.

      Freedom and franchise – freely given and not lightly taken.

  5. This is how Labour loses voters. They give the drug smuggler residency in NZ and then fail to do the right legal thing for Kiwi prisoners (probably because they are worried about public opinion but not about public opinion on Drug smuggler than nobody wants here??)

    Hello it’s the double standard that people hate. At least you know what you get with the Natz but Labour are all over the place with their ‘ethics’ and clearly seem seem more interested in migrant human rights or Kiwi’s rights overseas (aka big deal over criminal Kiwis being deported here from OZ, giving overseas born Derek Handley that citizenship outside of the rules or worrying about the refugees in Narau) but less interested in our own dirty human rights like not allowing prisoners to vote here and the constant miscarriages of justice here!

    The public are getting fed up with it! Start human rights locally, then expand, not put an oar in everyone else’s international business but then fail to follow through on NZ’s continual bad human rights practices, dodgy citizenships and human rights being stripped away aka rampant spying and data sharing.

    Haven’t even got to the environment where we are turning into an international joke or climate change when we are one of the only countries turning to diesel public transport in Wellington and the highest importer of PKE, while paying the CEO of Fonterra $8 million while he drives the co op into the ground and the farmers and environment with it!

    Jacinda’s lovely speeches about climate change are not the same as actions and we are not seeing much action and results for people born in NZ and the environment of NZ! The oil exploration still is continuing in spite of a ban, or maybe it is not really a ban at all?

    Look in the mirror NZ government, because Labour’s decision making machines ain’t pretty and they certainly are not consistent and in some cases seem pretty discriminatory against people born in NZ and still working here while having the things that made that non consumer choices to stay in NZ being stripped away aka quality of life free of pollution, ability to buy a decent house on a middle class wage, free quality health care and education for kids for all of the same standard across the board and human rights freedom being stripped away.

  6. Yep, well it wouldn’t be that hard a task to do a simple repeal of a bit of legislation.
    Btw ….. does anyone know whatever happened to Mr Quinn. I haven’t seen him lately exercising his ego in “don’t you know who I am” fashion driving around my area whilst talking on a cell phone in his black, roll-barred SUV.

    • @Castro apparently only takes 2 years to get permanent residency and then you don’t even have to live work here after that (just lie on the form and then you still get to keep residency if your ‘circumstances change) and you can be voting here, even if you can’t speak English and presumably someone else can tell you who to vote for.

      Then known anti democracy advocate Peter Thiel saga, when he can vote after 11 days in the county – what the fuck are our politicians doing, throwing our country under the bus, with democracy here.

      I know Labour and Natz are both rampent neoliberals who believe anything foreign is better than a Kiwi, even the prisoners they champion are foreign aka Sroubek, not Kiwis).

      Clearly the politicians can’t or don’t care about the obvious dangers of having so many people who are just paper Kiwis voting here??????

  7. NZ First might be blocking his ability to legislate? In any event it goes against the Bill of Rights and should therefore be rectified immediately.

    The very first priority of a government should be to insure electors are able to carry out their duty. Failure to do that and you quickly lose any meaningful democracy.

    Get your head in the game Andrew, geez, sort it out!

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