Still on the books

The Maori Community Development Act 1962:

31 Prevention of drunkenness

A Maori Warden may at any reasonable time enter any licensed premises in any area where he is authorised to carry out his duties and warn the licensee or any servant of the licensee to abstain from selling or supplying liquor to any Maori who in the opinion of the Warden is in a state of intoxication, or is violent, quarrelsome, or disorderly, or is likely to become so, whether intoxicated or not, and if the licensee or any servant of the licensee thereafter on the same day supplies liquor to that Maori, the licensee and, if the servant had been warned by the Warden, the servant, commits an offence against this Act.

H/T: Dim-Post

This comes from a TV3 story last night:

Wellington bar owners say drunk Maori will be specifically targeted during the World Cup, by a 50-year-old law that has been pulled from the archives by police and the city council.

The law allows Maori wardens to enter bars and remove drunk or violent Maori. …

Bar owners say it is racist.

“I can’t get my head around it and it is a racist law and I think it should be changed, and I can’t understand it’s still in the legislation,” says Wellington bar owner Jeremy Price.

Another bar owner, John Coleman, is just as worked up.

“It’s disgraceful, disrespectful and racist I can’t believe that they’re doing this,” he says.

The wardens were trialled after the South Africa, All Blacks game in Wellington a fortnight ago – and they will be used around the country during the Rugby World Cup.

The police say the Maori wardens have been successful around the country and even though this is a first for Courtenay Place, they do intend to use them on a long term basis.

It may be legal but it is racist, and the Police should not use the law. No problems with having Maori Wardens in an advisory capacity, but they should not use powers which are restricted to one race.

But they may not get their way, Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples says the law is outdated and he will review it.

“I’m sure it will be overhauled in terms of the duties, you are right the duties are old and they are written old,” he says.

It would be interesting to do a full review of all race based laws, and preferably abolish them if they are discriminatory.

Comments (131)

Login to comment or vote

Add a Comment