The Government's Safe and Effective Justice Advisory Group – Te Uepū Hāpai i te Ora – will visit the Bay of Plenty on November 5 and 6 as part of its nationwide consultation to gather information on the criminal justice system.
This is the third of 14 visits being held across New Zealand before Christmas to hear from people who have experienced the criminal justice system, as victims of crime or those who have committed crimes, and the groups who work in or with it every day.
In Tauranga, the group will hold a public conversation session on Monday November 5 at Greerton Library, 139 Greerton Rd, at 11.30am-1.30pm. They will hold a discussion with iwi and community groups in the afternoon.
In Rotorua, the group will hold a public conversation session on Tuesday November 6 at Te Aka Mauri Library, 1127 Haupapa St, at 1.30pm-3.30pm. In the morning, they will meet with iwi and community groups.
The group has been appointed to support the Hāpitia te Oranga Tangata Safe and Effective Justice Programme, which the Government has established to create a more effective criminal justice system, and a safer New Zealand.
The group, which is independent of the Government, has been tasked with finding out what people want from the criminal justice system, and to canvas a range of ideas about how it can be improved.
It is made up of former Minister for Courts Chester Borrows, who is the chair, and nine others who have experience working in or alongside the justice system.
Members who will attend the Bay of Plenty meetings are Ruth Money, Dr Carwyn Jones and Chester Borrows. Other members of the Group are Dr Jarrod Gilbert, Shila Nair, Professor Tracey McIntosh, Dr Warren Young, Professor Tony Ward, and Julia Whaipooti.
Borrows says their work is about informing the Government's drive to keep all New Zealand communities safer by enhancing the criminal justice system.
"This is a chance to make a big difference to our criminal justice system, and we're all looking forward to hearing what New Zealanders want and expect from it.
"We had a great response at our first meetings in South Auckland and Canterbury, and we're excited about engaging independently with key stakeholders and those with lived-experience in Bay of Plenty to form strategic recommendations for the Government.
"We want to hear from as many people as possible and, though we won't be able to meet with them all, we encourage anyone who wants to have their say to submit their ideas to us on the Safe and Effective Justice website.
"We will consider all feedback, in whatever form, to help inform our findings to the Minister."
The group is planning to make further visits across the country early next year.
Members of the public are also encouraged to submit their experiences and ideas to the Group at: https://www.safeandeffectivejustice.govt.nz/
Or contact them directly at email@example.com