Central government gets it wrong
Judging by the letters to the Matamata Chronicle about the sale of legal highs in Matamata it’s very clear that they are not welcome in our town.
Equally we have first-hand reports of the unsociable behaviour that results in those places where they are sold.
We are given to understand by the Matamata-Piako District Council that the current legislation does not allow the council to say no to the sale of these harmful substances.
It seems very obvious that central government has got it wrong with this legislation and despite the majority not being in favour of legal high sales, we have to defer to the minority. It doesn’t sound like democracy in action to me.
I’d urge the mayor and councillors to simply say no, we are not going to have these substances for sale in our town and demonstrate that the majority has the right to say yes to our peaceful existence.
You can almost here the cheering resounding around New Zealand when the Chronicle headline says
‘‘MPDC defies legislation and says no to legal highs’’.
Councils from around the country would be queuing up to see how we did it. the phone had been near Pohlen Park. Full searches were made in this area. Police were also hampered by a limited and vague description of the offenders. The victim advised police he would contact us immediately if the phone location polling started again. To date it has not.
I would be interested to know what the other two incidents were. We do need to know about these types of matters and we do look into all reported incidents. I take robbery and violence very seriously, and I do believe that everyone has the right to be able to walk home safely, whether it be from a night out or otherwise.
We do have an issue with a small group of people who are known to us. However, there’s a great deal of difficulty in dealing with cases like this, in the early hours of the morning, where we are limited to the evidence we have available. It’s very easy to say ‘‘police should take a stand’’ but I wonder what the writer is basing that on. We are bound by the law on what we can do and people do have rights – regardless of whether they are offenders, victims, or otherwise. I don’t wish to live in a society where police make decisions based on victims’ assumptions or suspicions, often based on race, because too many times the ‘‘people’’ thought to have been responsible have been found otherwise.
One of the greatest difficulties police face is a perceived fear people have or the mentality of ‘‘not wanting to get involved’’.
It’s very easy to hide behind initials or voice strong opinions while hiding. Police are helpless without people coming forward. We police the community at the behest of the community and rely on the support of the community.
I would be more than happy to meet this person and talk to them about their concerns.