Monday, February 4, 2013

Make Them Pay

PM John Key has rolled out a big to-do list this year...
He wants to bring NZ's budget back into the black, make the labour market more flexible, press ahead with energy privatisations and turn jails into "working prisons" with 40-hr weeks for inmates.
The PM announced these last week as Parliament kick-started for the year. He said NZ faced a construction boom, centred on EQ- savaged Christchurch, where an est. $30 billion was being spent. But the impact would be felt everywhere, as manufacturing geared up to supply materials: "Overall, the Christchurch rebuild is forecast to contribute 0.7% a year to growth over the next few years."
Johnno said operating deficits and govt debt increases had been "appropriate responses" to a recession, the global financial crisis and the Canterbury EQ. Now the govt hoped to hit a modest $53 million operating surplus in 2014-15, then start to reduce debt as a proportion of GDP.
There's plenty of talk about this wish-list already so I'll not add to it. One thing that did impress me was his idea of more working prisons, where crims are in a 40hr week work/rehab programme.
It's long past time for these misfits to pull their weight, pay their dues, and return something to the society they've damaged. In my opinion they should NOT get paid for it either - but be penalised further if they do NOT participate.
NZ Herald polled the question, "Should prisoners be paid for work schemes?" Of 3,000+ responses,
+Yes - they should receive minimum wage. 15%
+No - they're in prison for a reason. 70%
+How about giving them extended privileges instead? 15%
Based on that poll, and others more in-depth of late, NZers want those inside to pay their dues. We're not talking 'chain gangs' here... well, not YET...but prison is not a holiday camp. It's time inmates, wannabee crims, and do-gooders learnt that...

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