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Dropped target 'admission of failure'

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 4/05/2017

The government's decision to drop reducing reoffending as one of its public service targets is an admission of failure, Labour says.

A revised set of targets was released on Wednesday, and reducing reoffending wasn't one of them.

Several new targets in other areas have been added.

The target had been to reduce reoffending by a quarter by the middle of this year, but the rate had been running at around 4.5 per cent.

Labour's corrections spokesman, Kelvin Davis, says the government has failed dramatically and simply decided to stop measuring.

"Its the political equivalent of the Wallabies deciding not to keep track of the score when they play the All Blacks, so that no one can accuse them of losing," he said on Thursday.

"The Government's lock 'em up for longer approach is short sighted and has contributed to the reoffending rate."

Prime Minister Bill English said on Wednesday the target hadn't been dropped because it wasn't going to be met.

He said the rate was falling, significant resources had been committed to it and work was ongoing.

Mr English said the revised set of targets covered a broader range of objectives.

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