Just saw this on Law Society twitter feed by Justice Winkelmann http://www.lawsociety.org.nz/lawtalk/issue-878/mind-the-gap-closing-the-justice-gap
Was wondering why I hadn’t heard from the courts about this letter I wrote to them on 13 November, a real legal dilemma for them I’m sure.
I recently requested a transcript of my court appearance on 5 November 2015 and a copy of the CCTV footage of my time in court under the Privacy Act. I was refused this information on the grounds the Court is not bound by Privacy laws – which isn’t strictly true.
Mr Huston advised me I should write to the court and get a judge to release the information I am requesting. However Mr Huston did not know if the CCTV footage had been stored and was available.
Can a judge please ensure the release of the transcript of my court appearance between 10am and 10.30am and if the CCTV footage is available a copy of that, from when I first arrived in the court room at around 9.45am. I require this information to form part of my complaint to the United Nations as a disabled Civil Society Actor. To prove I am being persecuted and traumatised for my legal protests regarding abusive mental health services, human rights violations against disabled mentally injured and ill people, inequality, injustice and poverty.
If the CCTV footage is not recoverable could the judge please ask three people who witnessed me in court to write statements as to my dysfunctional behaviour prior and during the court appearance. The crying, nervous ticking, self-harming, rocking backwards and forwards and obvious distress I was in. This is a very severe psychological reaction to a stressful situation and having to represent myself in court – as I cannot afford legal aid (already paying $10/wk) while living on invalids benefit.
There was a woman who sat beside me at one point prior to my appearance, I think she was from mental health services, could she please make a statement, also a lawyer who I have met before (but do not recall her name) spoke for me when I couldn’t or didn’t know what to do and one other person of your choosing.
Also I am at a loss to understand why this prosecution is proceeding when my previous acquittals for wilful trespass should direct police action? I have already been acquitted of a charge of wilful trespass of ACC and my protest was far more challenging because I covered myself in fake blood, was singing and telling them how badly I was being treated. I have an audio recording of this protest and my arrest – which was very traumatic due to the pain of handcuffs. During the last protest I am being prosecuted for I took a painting of mine and two signs and sat quietly in the corner of their reception area – that is what the judgements by Judges Kos and Tuohy said I could do. I was also handcuffed and forced to walk past a lot of people on the street – who would of course have assumed I was a criminal – when I was not – this was humiliating.
I would also ask that this matter come before the court prior to Xmas and be dismissed, so I don’t have this stress hanging over my head during this time – as I am not expecting it to be easy considering the serious ill-health, poverty, family dysfunction and isolation I am currently living with.
My health professionals will confirm my life-threatening ill health and inability to access services – Please contact Dr Alan Doris at Manaaki Health Centre in Auckland and Jenny Kirby Counsellor in Masterton. My poor mental health is another significant reason to have this case dismissed.
Of course I intend to continue my protests, challenging society and those in authority about what is happening to me and so many other disabled mentally injured and ill people. Can the judge also direct the Police NOT TO arrest and charge me with my legal protests in the future.
In previous discussions with police we have an agreement that if I am swearing when at a protest I should be taken out of the situation because something upsetting would have happened (eg my flatmate attempted suicide or I was forced to move again) and I was reacting badly due to aspects of my disorder. If I was not swearing then they were to leave me there. On many other occasions I do occupations like this I am not charged with wilful trespass, please check my police file for all the other protests this year, why this time.
I have compounding Complex PTSD, so trauma on top of trauma makes my disorder much worse. The only reason I was so distressed on 5 November was because of all the other stresses in my life, things like no safe stable home, not enough money to live, being discriminated against and ostracized by my community, not working and being despised by my family and most of my community for it. Not having my 12 hrs per week ACC rehabilitation plan reinstated after it was illegally removed six years ago – I have won two reviews and not being able to access public mental health services.
I desperately need a lawyer, not just for these criminal charges but to protect me from further persecution and intimidation by the authorities as well as being defrauded of my health care and welfare entitlements through ACC, mental health and MSD. It is ACC and others who have driven me mad. I am a normal person suffering under inhuman living conditions, I am the responsibility of the government but instead of helping me, they are harming me. I can’t make them stop, only a lawyer can do that, the distress trying to represent myself causes is too much when I have serious problems going on in my life and my basic psycho-social and physical needs are not being met. I have been unable to get a lawyer for years, I cannot phone any more as I become highly suicidal and self-harm. Protesting like I do helps me cope, persecuting me through the court system for doing it is cruel, criminal and immoral.
I would also like to apologise to Judge Ruth for flipping out, however if he knew my situation he would understand. I have developed a tourettes type disorder, my psychiatrist will confirm and sometimes I cannot stop myself from swearing if I am extremely distressed and angry – which is often. These words are the language of my culture, when you are suffering abuse and injustice you are allowed to swear at, or about, the people who are doing it to you.
Another reason I felt little respect for the judicial process is I have finally accepted that it was the judiciary who ensured the discrimination and persecution of thousands of disabled mentally injured and ill people. They knew cutting housing (shutting down facilities) and driving people into the community would cause harm, they watched it happen and then started prosecuting these poor disabled people through the justice system. How could a civil society allow the discrimination and persecution of a whole disabled sector? People who have behavioural issues due to psychological injury or illness cannot be held accountable for their actions – it is absurd even to suggest it. An analogy would be people with heart conditions are responsible if their hearts stop. The analogy with regard to health care for a heart patient compared to a psych patient would be the heart surgeon giving you painkillers, refusing to operate, sticking a needle into the heart repeatedly just to see if it is still unwell and then telling you there is no funding for the care you need to recover.
I am not sure if this is the right email address to send this request, can I please have confirmation my letter has been received and is being looked at by a judge?
Civil Society Actor