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The reviews of the legislation governing policing and corrections, which have
resulted in improvements to the law in those areas, notably through the Policing Act 2008;
The enactment of the Crimes Amendment Act 2007 which repeals the legal
defence for the use of reasonable force “by way of correction” in section 59 of the Crimes Act
1961 and prohibits corporal punishment; and

The abolition of the death penalty under the Abolition of the Death Penalty Act


Main issues of concerns and recommendations

Incorporation of the Convention in national legislation
While appreciating the steps the State party has taken to bring its domestic laws into
compliance with its obligations under the Convention, the Committee is concerned that the
Convention has not been fully incorporated into domestic law. The Committee notes with
concern that the New Zealand Bill of Rights, while giving effect to a number of provisions of the
Convention, including article 2, has no higher status than ordinary legislation in the domestic
legal order, which may result in the enactment of laws that are incompatible with the
Convention. The Committee further notes that judicial decisions make little reference to
international human rights instruments, including the Convention. (art.2)
The State party should:
Enact comprehensive legislation to incorporate into domestic law all
the provisions of the Convention;
Establish a mechanism to consistently ensure the compatibility of
domestic law with the Convention; and
Organize training programmes for the judiciary on the provisions of
the Convention and the jurisprudence of the Committee.
Protection of minorities from torture and ill-treatment
While taking note of the Maori Strategic Plan developed by the Department of
Corrections, as well as the various initiatives undertaken by the Ministry of Justice to reduce
Maori offending, the Committee is alarmed at the disproportionately high number of Maoris and
Pacific Islands people incarcerated, in particular women who, according to information available
to the Committee represent 60 per cent of the female prison population. The Committee is
further concerned at the over-representation of Maoris at all levels of the criminal justice
process, as well as at the insufficient safeguards in place to protect the rights of minorities from
discrimination and marginalization, which put them at a higher risk of torture and ill-treatment.
The Committee recalls that the protection of certain minorities or marginalized
individuals or populations especially at risk of torture is a part of the obligation of
the State party to prevent torture and ill-treatment. In this regard, the State party
should take further measures including legal, administrative and judicial measures,
to reduce the over-representation of Maoris and Pacific Islands people in prison, in
particular women. The State party should also provide adequate training to the
judiciary and law enforcement personnel that takes into account the obligation to

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