Roastbuster issue wider than individual Police officer practice

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MIL OSI – Source: National Council of Women of New Zealand – Roastbuster issue wider than individual Police officer practice

The Independent Police Conduct Authority’s report on police handling into the “Roastbusters” highlights continued systemic and cultural failings within the New Zealand Police.

The report details the numerous deficiencies in Police handling of the cases. It focuses on the individual officers involved stating that the problems were a result of poor individual practice and cannot be said to represent child abuse investigations nationwide.

Police Commissioner Mike Bush today said that it was a performance issue for the police officers.

However, the council’s President Rae Duff believes that given the breadth, number and nature of the Police failings there are wider factors at play.

“The IPCA report finds that the Police treated the victims with compassion and dignity. This appears however to be a surface response as their actions showed they did not care or try hard enough to get justice for the victims.”

Rae Duff said the report gives no information to support its statement that the issues were not representative of other investigations.

“I would like the IPCA to tell us how they came to that conclusion, given there were a number of police officers involved in the bungling of the police response.

“Previous reports have highlighted issues with police culture. While the IPCA report recognises that Police have improved as a result, it’s still not good enough.

“The police response to Roastbusters is evidence of how sexism in our society plays out within an institution and it resulted in a travesty of justice for these young women.”

IPCA have asked Police to undertake a number of actions, including determining whether policy or practice needs to be addressed. Rae Duff said she expected that a review would find further work needs to be done.

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Selwyn Manning, BCS (Hons.) MCS (Hons.) is an investigative political journalist with 23 years media experience. He specializes in reportage and analysis of socioeconomics, politics, foreign affairs, and security/intelligence issues. Selwyn has extensive experience as a commentator and has provided live political analysis to a wide range of television and radio organizations broadcasting in New Zealand, Australia and globally including the BBC (Five Live, London) and BBC (World Service). He is currently a correspondent to Australia's FiveAA radio, and is a regular live-on-air panelist on Radio New Zealand's The Panel with broadcaster Jim Mora.

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