30 Sep 2008

Gang insignia bill should extend to other councils - MP

10:35 am on 30 September 2008

New Zealand First says legislation banning the wearing of gang patches in public in Wanganui, should extend to other districts.

Parliament's Law and Order Select Committee voted on Monday to back a bill initiated by the Wanganui District Council and sponsored by National Party MP for Whanganui Chester Borrows, which bans the wearing of gang insignia.

Select committee chair, New Zealand First MP Ron Mark, says the Wanganui bill is a good law for the country.

Mr Mark hopes other councils will look at the legislation and come to Parliament seeking similar laws for their districts.

The bill is now awaiting a second reading.

It followed 18 months of gang violence in the area, which ended in the drive-by shooting of a child, aged two years.

The select committee says the council does not believe the bill will solve local gang problems, but believes it could form the beginning of a solution.