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Rehabilitated?

Written By: - Date published: 11:58 am, March 29th, 2009 - 9 comments
Categories: law and "order" - Tags:

On Q+A this morning, Judith Collins couldn’t defend prisons for profit but she sounded quite reasonable when talking about the need for more rehabilitation. She even criticised Labour for longer sentences that are leading to overcrowding in the prisons.

Good sentiments but, funny, it doesn’t sound like the Judith Collins we know.

19 July 2007 “the Government is to make it easier for people to serve much shorter sentences in the first place. That is one of my concerns”

18 May 2004 “When I looked at the purpose of the legislation, I asked myself what it says about the people who signed up for tougher sentencing. It says to the 92 percent of people in this country who signed a referendum for tougher sentencing that they are not important. As we have said, and we all know, rehabilitation does not work.”

5 May 2004 “I have found that a lot of people in the community are very interested in law and order and in tougher sentences being handed down, and I am one of them”

1 April 2003 “We in the National Party are not foolish enough to think that prisons at the moment ever rehabilitate. What they do is keep people in a place where, it is hoped, they will be out of harm’s way and away from the general public. Prison is in fact a punishment. I know that to the Labour Party that is a whole new attitude, but prisons should be places of punishment”

Maybe Collins has had a conversion. Good on her if she has. Or maybe she’s all talk on rehabilitation and the reality will be more ‘lock them up and throw away the key’ ideology.

PS.  to Q+A’s producers. It’s meant to be the one serious political interview show on TV. Don’t get politicans’ fiancees on.

9 comments on “Rehabilitated? ”

  1. Judith Collins is first and foremost a National Party hack. Like Tony Ryall. She will say anything she needs to say and do anything she needs to do for political advantage. These is no overriding principle or integrity operating there. As long as everyone understands that, her words and actions will be completely comprehensible.

  2. r0b 2

    Note to reporters everywhere. See how easy it is to do a bit of background work, and check if what Person X says today is consistent with what they said in the past?

    Here’s another recent example:

    Where would you get that idea?

    When people change their story it’s always interesting to ask why…

  3. the sprout 3

    I thought Guyon Espiner’s performance this morning was a bit disappointing after what was a really good interview he conducted with John Key last week. He let Collins get away with an awful lot and didn’t seem too interested in questioning her responses.

    I really don’t get what Paul Holmes is meant to do for the show, his role seems superfluous and his style seems very outdated. Someone should tell him things have moved on a bit in the world of political interviewing since he used to be on TV.

  4. Pixie 4

    From memory, Judith Collins wasn’t the opposition spokesperson on Corrections, so her views now are no doubt more informed than previously.

    It’s difficult for any interviewer to get hits on a new Govt this early on in its term. For example, each time Guyon tried to put a hard question to her about the inadequacies of her department, she was able to agree with him and blame the last administration. But these tactics won’t work forever.

    • Felix 4.1

      That’s true, but it’s also exactly why they shouldn’t be asking those patsy questions. Guyon knows that’s how she’ll respond, so why waste everyone’s time?

  5. Pascal's bookie 5

    From memory, Judith Collins wasn’t the opposition spokesperson on Corrections, so her views now are no doubt more informed than previously.

    Fair enough, but the question should still be put so she can explain that she didnae ken what she was on about previously…

  6. Helena 6

    Should there be special treatment for Maori or should everyone be treated the same?

    • Tigger 6.1

      Helena, don’t confuse ‘special’ with ‘specialist’. If there are different ways of treating different prisoners that leads to less re-offending then as far as I’m concerned, bring it on.

      That said, I’m not in favour of privately run prisons no matter who runs them – companies, iwi etc. We locked these people up and it’s our job to look after them while they’re inside.

      But I would like to see different thinking around rehabilitation and I personally know of Maori and indeed Pacific Island practitioners who have great success rehabilitation programmes that would do well rolled out to wider groups. There are also practitioners working with prisoners offending to feed drug habits or because of sexual abuse that could use better support.

      Collins has no interest in this though, no matter what she might say.

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