JustSpeak was formed in Wellington in 2011 as a youth branch of Rethinking Crime and Punishment. We are made up of a National Leadership Group and an ever growing group of JustSpeakers. On 8 August 2012, the same day that JustSpeak celebrated one year of monthly forums, JustSpeak launched in Auckland as well.
JustSpeak aims to empower young people from all walks of life to think independently and speak out about justice issues that they care about or that affect them. We are working for change through innovation, a sense of urgency and a belief that we can achieve a more just Aotearoa.
JustSpeak is founded on the following whakatauki:
Mā te tika o te toki, o te tangere, me te tohu o te panaho, ka pai te tere o te waka i ngā momo moana katoa.
By designing and shaping the keel of the waka to perfection, your canoe will overcome obstacles.
The whakatauki articulates the need to design the keel of JustSpeak to perfection, so that the group can overcome obstacles, and maintain a durable voice in the criminal justice conversation.
The whakatauki also points to the need for the keel of a bigger waka – the criminal justice system – to be designed carefully, so that it can provide a sustainable vehicle to rehabilitate and reintegrate members of society.
JustSpeak celebrating our 5th birthday with founding members Kate Stone and Julia Spelman, July 2016