Proposed DNA Bill Is An Outrage

13 February 2009 10:50:00

Libertarianz leader Richard McGrath said a proposed law change that would allow police to demand DNA samples from arrested New Zealanders is an outrageous violation of individual rights.

“The Attorney-General knows that such a law is inconsistent with the Bill of Rights Act, which is supposed to protect New Zealanders and their property from unreasonable search and seizure,” said Dr McGrath. “Yet despite this he says he will personally vote to have it passed.”

“What does this tell us? Firstly, that the National Party – despite their rhetoric – have no regard for people’s rights and freedoms, and secondly that the Bill of Rights is toothless and irrelevant.”

“Whatever happened to the presumption of innocence until proven guilty?” asked Dr McGrath. “The proposed legislation would crush a fundamental right enjoyed by the citizens of Western democracies.”

“A DNA sample provides a very intimate look into a person’s makeup,” he added. “It reveals the very essence of a person, as opposed to a fingerprint. The information obtained can be misused unless very stringent safeguards are employed to keep it secure. But this is beside the point. If you are innocent, why should you have to submit to a blood test, buccal smear or any other sort of DNA gathering?”

Dr McGrath said regardless of whether this Bill becomes law or not, any MP who votes for it should immediately have a DNA sample taken, to be added permanently to the database beside that of convicted criminals.

For more information, please contact:

Dr Richard McGrath
Libertarianz Leader
Phone: 027 322 2907
Email: [email protected]

Libertarianz: More Freedom, Less Government
www.libertarianz.org.nz