Kiwis deserve the debate on gangs and crime

Leader of the Opposition Judith Collins says the Government’s approach to law and order is appalling, as she releases National’s third billboard as part of its ‘Demand the Debate’ campaign.

 “The Government backing the Mongrel Mob to rehabilitate people on meth over proven organisations with no gang affiliation will make many New Zealanders angry,” Ms Collins says.

“Giving $2.75 million to the Mongrel Mob and their Trust in the Hawkes Bay shows the Government is completely devoid of the reality of the misery gangs cause to law abiding New Zealanders.

“That this money will also be used so meth addicts can work on a ‘gang leader’s garden’ is ridiculous, and the taxpayer deserve better.

“Every week I’m contacted by thousands of Kiwis who feel they are being left out and want a say on the future of their country. They want the debate on whether government policies are recruiting more gang members than police officers, creating more victims than prisoners, and whether ‘arrest is now the exception’ as said by police.

“Police figures show that gang membership throughout New Zealand has passed 8000 – an increase of nearly 50 per cent since Labour came into office four years ago.

“On a weekly basis we learn of increased gang-related gun crime, shootings and escalating addiction, particularly in our provinces.

“The Prime Minister needs to realise that gangs have no interest at all in seeing people give up drugs, they’re the ones selling the drugs to them in the first place.

“New Zealanders are being left out. There are many organisations who need support urgently to stem drug harm in their communities who are left wanting as the Mob grows richer.

“The Proceeds of Crime policy initiated by National was to help victims of crime, not gangs.

“The Government’s Parliamentary majority is not a mandate for Labour to promote their ideological wish list. New Zealanders deserve a say on their country’s future and together we must demand the debate.”

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