National is today proposing performance measures for District and High Courts to ensure justice is served faster, National’s Courts spokesperson Chris Penk says.
“The overwhelming complaint we hear about the justice system is how long it takes to get things done. Even paying a fine can take days. Data from the Ministry of Justice shows since the Government took office it’s taking 46.5 per cent longer to get through cases in the District Court than under National. Those delays put additional stress on victims of crime who want to move on.
“We believe there is room to trial performance measures in District and High Courts to speed things up. We also want to ensure sexual violence cases are dealt with within 12 months. These are similar to performance measures the previous National Government used to improve access to treatment and screening at District Health Boards.
“We’d also like to see Justices of the Peace used more for minor offences and traffic cases to free up judges’ time, and courts used at night and on weekends. Most courts sit for four hours a day. Where there is legitimate need, and where the court can sit, we would extend those hours to ensure people don’t have to wait months for their cases to be heard.
“We’re doing the work in Opposition so we’re ready to hit the ground running in 2020. National is the party of law and order. We put victims at the heart of everything we do and we want to see a courts system that delivers justice faster and more effectively.”