Vote for justice: Should New Zealand Consider Binding Citizen-Initiated Referenda on Law and Order Policy?
This paper examines the origins, benefits and pitfalls of the Citizen Initiated Referenda Act 1993, focusing on the non-binding justice-based referendum question put to the public in 1999. Citizen Initiated Referenda find their roots within the ideas of public participation in government, or direct democracy. This paper examines the philosophical and political theories – both in favour and against direct democracy – in order to canvas opinions relating to political participation. This is used as a basis to assess whether New Zealand should consider holding binding referenda on criminal justice related issues.