Volunteers should not be prosecuted

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The Conservative Party is calling for a Law change so that people involved in legitimate volunteer activities cannot be charged for accidents.

“We are going to seriously limit volunteer activity if we continue with punitive action against people who are freely giving their time and energy to help others,” says Party spokesman Leighton Baker.

Volunteer organisations find it hard enough now to attract volunteers without there being a threat of possible prosecution when people are dealing with traumatic situations. Our legal system needs to recognise that punishments should be reserved for people that are doing wrong, not people that are trying to help others.

Aside from cases of gross negligence or criminal activity, those generous people who sacrifice time and energy to help their fellow citizens should be recognised and applauded, not prosecuted.

It does seem bizarre that in a time when over 90% of burglaries are not resolved, we have a volunteer fireman dragged through the courts.

Our thoughts and thanks go out to John Klaphake, another generous New Zealander.

Leighton Baker

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