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Aotearoa New Zealand's Situation

Aotearoa New Zealand has one of the highest rates of incarceration in the western world.*

NZ's prison population is composed overwhelmingly of men who have experienced poverty, neglect and violence as children.* They are men who have had their beginnings defined by experiences they could not control, and futures determined by processes over which they have limited power.

“Sticking us in jail ain’t gonna do nothing … when we get out …. we go back to doing what we did before … and when we come back [to prison], that’s okay, we know how it goes, we’ve been here before”.

A system that struggles

Without effective resolution and healing of their trauma, most men in prison have graduated from Oranga Tamariki Care and Protection, Youth Justice and/or mental health services, into a punitive system that sees incarceration result in a greater degree of reoffending than any other form of punishment. Of these rangatahi, 77% will be re-sentenced within two years of their release from prison.*

The evidence is clear

  • Incarceration does not deter crime, relieve the fear of crime, or improve victim support.
  • Prisons reduce public safety by leading to increased offending.
  • It is a more positive investment (both financially and socially) to address the causes of crime and to divert individuals from reoccurring interactions with the justice system.*

Te Kāhu Tiu provides that positive alternative; a community based justice reinvestment programme to secure better futures, for us all.

Te Kāhu Tiu will provide a therapeutic, educational and cultural learning environment for rangatahi.

Aspire to 'save' our rangatahi from incarceration and to simultaneously give them wings.

“The current state is a social and economic cost that we as a country cannot afford.” 

– Rt Honorable Kelvin Davis, Hōkai Rangi Ara Poutama Aotearoa Strategy | 2019–2024