Lawyers concerned about human rights. More specifically, their own

A cash shortage at the Independent Police Conduct Authority could hamper New Zealand’s human rights, lawyers say.

Sir David Carruthers, the authority’s chair, yesterday told a parliamentary committee that if it had to launch an investigation of the same size as the Urewera Raids it would struggle to cope.

The raids drained significant financial and human resources, resulting in the authority using some of its reserves and having to delay cases.

But Sir David said picking from its financial buffer again in future wasn’t possible.

He said revenue has remained relatively static, and money is limited.

“At the moment, I’m satisfied that we’re not ducking any work which we should be doing to fulfil our statutory mandate, but we don’t have any room to move, frankly,” he said.

“It’s tight and we’re watching every penny and I won’t hesitate to speak up if I think it gets to a stage where we can’t do the job properly.”

Michael Bott, a lawyer and New Zealand Council of Civil Liberties member, said depriving the IPCA of funds risks hampering New Zealand’s human rights.

“If it gets another big inquiry that would take up hundreds of hours and work,” he said.

“And unfortunately if you don’t have sufficient supply to do this, things don’t get done, things get backlogged or outsourced.”

Oh noes! ?Outsourced!

If there is no money it gets outsourced. ?That means 1) it’ll be cheaper, 2) Bott doesn’t get to earn the money at the taxpayer trough.

Good grief, the naked self interest with a light dash of “human rights violations”.