Military Justice Legislation Amendment Bill – Third Reading – Video 9
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Military Justice Legislation Amendment Bill – Third Reading – Video 9


legislation of mmm bill I call Lewis a war that’s you know quit tomorrow you’re too funny thank you my colleague David Bennett we are having a split call and I do appreciate you allowing me to go first so as a member of the Foreign Affairs defense and trade Select Committee we have considered the Military Justice legislation amendment bill in a seizure I just wanted to start with the purpose of the bill which essentially is to bring efficiency transparency consistency between both the military justice system in our criminal justice system because currently they’re separate and so the objective has been to align military justice with criminal justice because at the end of the day the people that are part of our society who are criminal justice systems is and people in the military are actually equal citizens of our country and so the whole objective of this bill is to ensure fairness and equality of justice but also to ensure that victims of serious crime actually have the same rights and receive the same support and so we really need to look at where I guess the context of this change came from and it was actually a review of the military justice system that took place between 2002 and 2006 and so it was to look at whether or not the military justice system was robust and fear and to align it with our criminal justice system and I do want to note that the review was a collaboration between the New Zealand Defence Force the Ministry of Justice the chief judge of the court martial and specifically in consultation with the New Zealand law society in victims support and it did make amendments and the following four areas and in this is what this bill will do the first and them in one of the focus foci of this piece of legislation was around victims rights so as to ensure that it conclude the same rights to military victims of serious offenses including sexual or violent offenses to those rights afforded victims in the civilian criminal justice system so I think we’ve all become a lot more aware of the sensitivities in those situations and making sure that victims mxs immediately to counseling and other support services given the trauma of being a victim of of sexual violence it also was about judicial appointments and ensuring that judicial appointments with the purpose and that purpose was to ensure that there were no conflicts of interest and also to separate what interestingly interestingly had been a kind of situation within military system where military commanding officers essentially had all the power and could do whatever they wanted and I will talk about a case from the UK which kind of highlights are all the floors and the military justice system it was also about court-martial procedure and whether an accused was in the first instance unfit to stand trial because what you had in the military justice system was a trial and then there was an assessment about whether or not that person had was incapacitated and actually should have stood trial in the first place so if people are unfit to stand trial because they have a mental illness or they are deemed by psychiatrists to be in a states of insanity and they shouldn’t be held accountable for their actions in in fact why would we go through an entire court process if someone was unfit to stand trial and then the other major focus mr. speaker has been on the onus of proof so and the onus of proof shifting it from and the criminal justice system if someone like the police takes a charge against you they have to prove that you are that you’ve committed a crime in the military justice system actually by mere virtue of you being charged there’s an assumption that you’re guilty and so again that was probably a big highlight but what I wanted to share was that you know these things have been driven because of precedence and there was a case in there at European Court of Human Rights and essentially it was because a soldier had fought in the Falklands he’d witnessed horrific things and he actually had a mental breakdown while he was still working for the military tried to kill himself shot a television and he went right through the court-martial process and so that shouldn’t happen and this bill will stop that in the future Kilda the Honorable David diamond just following on from previous speakers in this debate I think he runs pretty much

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