The Government will discuss frontline police wearing small
cameras on their uniforms while on duty so they can provide
The idea captured Justice Minister Judith Collins' attention
while she was in Britain, where she was told about a trial
being undertaken there in which officers wore the
She was told it was having big impact on domestic violence
prosecutions in particular because the cameras were providing
immediate evidence of the injuries and damage the offenders
Because of that, prosecutions were less likely to fail if
victims were pressured to withdraw their complaints because
the evidence was there.
Ms Collins said she would be talking to Police Minister Anne
Tolley about that idea.
Meanwhile, the minister is bringing together a select group
of New Zealand and international specialists to map out new
ways to deal with crime over the next 10 years.
Ms Collins said she would be open to any new idea that
worked, even if the idea was quite radical.
She said did not want lobbyists at the symposium, to be held
at the end of April, and about a quarter of those attending
would be specialists from overseas.
"We are going to do some blue skies thinking," she told the
She wanted to hear from victims of crime and even former
offenders who had undergone successful rehabilitation, but
she wanted a research-based symposium and expected a number
of papers to be presented.
New Zealand and overseas judges would be invited, as would
people involved in prisoner rehabilitation, lawyers, and
The Better Public Service targets in the justice sector were
on course to be reached well before 2017 with the crime rate
to a 33-year-low, the prison population dropping and 19 per
cent fewer prosecutions last year.
"We don't want to rest on our laurels and we don't want to
get bogged down in just focussing on getting to the targets
we know we are going to achieve.
"We want to take ourselves up to another level over the next
10 years so it's a big thinking project."
One of the initial targets was to reduce youth crime by five
per cent by 2017. That has been exceeded with a drop of 19
per cent between 2011 and 2013, and the target has been reset
at a 25 per cent reduction by 2017.
The sector's other targets remain the same - a 15 per cent
reduction in overall crime, a 20 per cent reduction in
violent crime and a 25 per cent reduction in re-offending by
- Audrey Young of the NZ Herald