November 30, 2015
Bias skews crime stats
Labour's police spokesman Kelvin Davis says an admission by the police commissioner that police have exercised bias in the the way Maori are apprehended and prosecuted show the law has not been applied fairly.
Mike Bush made the admission in a television interview over the weekend, calling it 'unconsious bias' which he is trying to address by making changes at a senior management level so they can trickle down the organisation.
Mr Davis says the change needs to come in the way police are trained and managed at all levels.
He says the bias may have created a perception that Maori crime levels are higher than they are.
"Obviously if Maori have been picked on the statistics have been skewed, and people say 'you just have to look at the statistics to see Maori have been causing all the trouble.' Hang on, now we know the statistics have been screwed a bit, not to say we don't have more to do ourselves as Maori looking at our behaviour but we also have to look at the system and how the system has denied us justice," he says.
Kelvin Davis dropped the shadow police portfolio in today's Labour reshuffle, but he gains corrections, picks up Maori development and moves up to number 7 in the caucus rankings.
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