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“We will return this country to what other generations knew: That crime doesn’t pay,” said Mr Peters.
Calling young people toe-rags and encouraging the bash may appeal to populist votes but it is unlikely to solve youth crime.
“Many of these politicians have no idea how the other half live and don’t venture into the real world.
“Besides repealing the anti-smacking law, which doesn’t work and has in fact seen greater violence towards children, New Zealand First will lower the age of criminal responsibility; change social welfare to demand parental accountability and will make sure there are far more police on the frontline – 1800 more as soon as they can be trained.
“It’s helped massively to change the idea that actually parents and other adults responsible for children are legally entitled to use physical punishment on their kids, that sometimes led to quite serious assaults,” said Ms Bradford.
Repealing the law would send the wrong message, she believes.
That seems like a massive exaggeration, and I’d be surprised if they have evidence of a direct connection between the law change and levels of violence against children.
Family First have always strongly opposed the law change.
No law can stop that.” Massive increases in child abuse in the decade since the law began?
“They know they will get away with it and that there will be no repercussions.
”Meanwhile, the old parties in parliament want the age of criminal responsibility raised.
“What he’s advocating is the return of the legalising of assault on our children, which is the last thing our kids need and the last thing the kids of Northland need.” Ms Bradford said: “He’s talking about this on the back of the incident up in Kaikohe recently with the young people rampaging.
“Those kids probably see far too much violence I’d suggest in their lives already, far too much poverty, unemployment, a lack of opportunities for their families in their part of the country.” The 2007 law change removed the defence of “reasonable force” in cases where parents and caregivers were being prosecuted for assault on children.