Ashburton Shootings – Review Exposes Serious Flaws. Member of the Public Injured in Bank Robbery

flowers close to the scene of the tragedy

flowers close to the scene of the tragedy

It’s been called New Zealand’s equivalent of the Sydney Siege, but the Ashburton shootings went largely un-noticed by the world’s media.

Watch the news video here

On September 1st last year a 48 year old man walked into a government office and shot two workers to death and seriously injured a third. The deceased were Peg Noble and Leigh Cleveland,  Lindy Curtis was seriously wounded.

Now an independent review has exposed flaws in the Ministry of Social Development’s (MSD) safety and security measures. It appears that there wasn’t much of a security protocol in place, it developed on an ad-hoc basis over time, and a similar incident could occur again.

The review found several deficiencies in the security model of the ministry, which employs 10,000 staff and received 2 million visits to its frontline Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) and Child Youth and Family (CYF) offices over the past year.

Safety and security protocol had evolved over time, rather than being strategically planned, resulting in inconsistent practices and cultures across the organisation.

The ministry’s approach needed to be more cohesive, the review found…

What is worse, is that the shootings were almost inevitable because there was a tendency to turn a blind eye to threats, so as to avoid paperwork…

Reporting of incidents was poor at some sites, with a high tolerance of poor client behaviour and reluctance to use time-consuming reporting software, the review found.

Anecdotally, serious incidents have occasionally been down-played and recorded as ‘medium’ to avoid calls and investigation from regional and national office.”

…Commenting on the Ashburton event, Jack and Robinson said implementing their recommendations would not prevent such events from happening again.

“That event was extreme at every level, and even if the ministry fully adopts and implements all of our recommendations . . . extreme events could still occur.”

source – Security flaws revealed after shooting at WINZ

If you want to read the report, without the NZ media spin, here’s the link

South Auckland Bank Robbery

ASB bank robbery

Also in today’s New Zealand news. A customer has been injured during a bank robbery at a branch of the ASB in Papakura. A person has been transferred to hospital with stab wounds.

In a statement this afternoon, ASB Papakura confirmed a customer was injured in the altercation. Staff were unharmed but shaken.

“The wellbeing and safety of our staff and customers is our highest priority and we have the utmost concern and sympathy for the customer who was injured in the incident.”

For more about the high incidence of armed robberies in New Zealand click here – Armed Robberies Becoming Endemic in NZ