Jo Goodhew MP for Rangitata DIARY
Sun 19 Feb
Participate in Round the Bays Fundraiser (Wgtn)
Mon 20 Feb
Electorate work & meetings (Ash)
Tue 21 Feb
Electorate work & meetings, Attend New Citizenship Ceremony (Tim)
Wed 22 -Thur 23 Feb
Electorate work, business and school visits (Tim)
Fri 24 Feb
Electorate work, Host List MP Melissa Lee (Tim)
Sat 25 Feb
Speak at Opening of Classic Truck Museum SC Traction Engine & Vintage Steam Club (Tim)
Mon 27 Feb - Thur 2 March
Electorate work, Business & School Visits, Host Seniors Forum, Attend SC Community Expo (Tim)
Frid 3 March
Electorate work, Business & School Visits, Attend New Citizenship Ceremony (Ash)
Sat 4 March
A&P Show (Winchester)
Sun 5 March
Hadlow to Harbour, National Children’s Day
Mon 6 March
Electorate work & meetings (Ash)
Tue 7 - Thur 9 March
Caucus & House duties (Wgtn)
A safer New Zealand for women and families
One of the enduring issues that has always been of concern to constituents I have met and spoken with over the years is law and order. I have found the crimes which usually concern and upset people the most are crimes of violence against women and children.
My constituents are often surprised to hear that violence within homes occurs regularly in our region and that women seeking help to escape family violence, and occasionally men, come to me for help. Families want, and deserve, to feel safe in their homes and in their communities as they go about their day-to-day lives.
Making women and children feel safer in their homes and communities is something the Government has been working hard on.
The half-billion dollar Safer Communities package, which Prime Minister Bill English and Police Minister Paula Bennett announced recently, recognises that more is needed to protect women and children from crime, particularly at home.
The additional 1125 Police staff mean officers can respond faster to call-outs, wherever they are. This is especially good news for rural families, because it means 95 per cent of people will be within 25km of an around-the-clock Police presence.
The investment also addresses the underlying drivers of crime through preventative work and more rehabilitation for prisoners. And it supports young people to re-engage in education – setting at-risk youth on a more productive path.
Critically, it includes funding for 74 additional specialist investigators to target serious offending against children, as well as sexual assault and family violence.
Corrections and Police are already working together to share information about family violence risks and to stop intergenerational violence. This package gives them extra funding to do more of this.
We are determined that this significant investment will genuinely keep women, their families and their wider communities safer.
That’s why the package includes some challenging targets, including that Police will contribute to 10 per cent fewer deaths from family violence, a 25 per cent reduction in reoffending by Maori, and more than 90 per cent of 111 emergency calls answered within 10 seconds.
The Safer Communities package builds on the work we have done to reduce family violence, which is preventing too many families from enjoying healthy, happy and fulfilling lives.
Last year, we announced a major overhaul of family violence laws, supported by an investment of $130 million over four years. The changes included making the safety of victims a principal consideration in all bail decisions and central to parenting and property orders; enforcing tougher penalties for people who commit crimes while subject to a Protection Order; and creating new offences of non-fatal strangulation and assault on a family member – with tougher sentences than common assault.
We are also piloting an Integrated Safety Response (ISR) initiative in Christchurch and the Waikato, which brings together various agencies and NGOs for a more integrated and effective response to family violence. We recently announced a $680,000 boost towards more frontline services and places in perpetrator programmes in the Christchurch pilot.
Tackling family violence is difficult and complex. But as the Prime Minister said, we are not here to shy away from the tough issues.