New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Monday announced a multimillion-dollar package to tackle widespread retail crime and reoffending. The initiative, which partner with small businesses and local councils, are the most significant crime prevention financial package, reports Xinhua news agency.
"While youth crime is now much lower than in the past, the risks and harm from ram raids and other retail crime is concerning communities and creating victims," Ardern said in a press conference following a series of raids of local shops in several cities.
"Shop owners and workers feel targeted. That's unacceptable," she said. The Prime Minister added that the police have already been working to reduce the offending rates, with raids this month down by 83 per cent compared with August.
Crime prevention initiatives have been further supported, such as better street lighting, cameras and more fog cannons, said the prime minister. The government will establish a new fog-cannon subsidy scheme open to all small shops and dairies in New Zealand.
The fog cannon fund was set up in 2017 after aggravated robberies of commercial premises had doubled from 599 to 1,170 since 2015, statistics show.