Operational Report 2021-2023

July 11, 2023


Since 2021, JustSpeak has had some significant challenges, changes, and achievements. In 2021, we experienced for the second time a nationwide lockdown.. This lockdown swiftly moved our organisation into advocacy mode for r people in prison, who experienced extended and prolonged lockdown periods in their cells during the lockdown. The effect of this was that after the nationwide lockdown was lifted, people in Corrections custody continued to experience prolonged lockdown periods. As an organisation, we pushed hard to lift the veil on several human rights and minimum entitlement violations, calling on Corrections to meet their legal obligations. In the background of all of this, we were working hard on recording interviews for our podcast, working alongside other justice organisations to establish the Justice Collective, and working on other important campaign work.

In 2022, we saw a number of staffing shifts with some staff moving on to new opportunities and new people joining the organisation and carrying the JustSpeak torch. We produced our podcast -True Justice, we advocated to stop mass prison transfers (although unsuccessful we raised national awareness on the issue), we wrote a number of open letters, engaged with justice sector leaders, worked collaboratively with other justice organisations, and commenced a lot of exciting plans for 2023.

Again, 2023 has been no exception to challenge, especially with respect to funding to ensure we can keep doing our work. Despite this though, we have gone on to do some great work and collaboration: including our Talking about Crime and Justice Narrative and Messaging course which was led by the Workshop; we’ve conducted interviews and written numerous  submissions including one for the United Nations Convention Against Torture, we’ve continued to develop relationships with justice sector leaders. We have done all this while also progressing a number of campaigns including our rangatahi/youth campaign), our wāhine Māori campaign, our election campaign and many other public speaking events and media engagements, not to mention, our podcast True Justice won a Voyager Award!

It's been a great year and Matariki (the Māori New Year) offers JustSpeak an opportunity to reflect, reset, and continue on the work for transformational justice.

Aphiphany Forward-Taua


We have been investing in the capacity of, and connections between our community, in order to grow the power of our organisation and the wider justice movement to achieve lasting systems change.

Our operations team has invested over 1,400 hours of face to face time with stakeholders, organisations and communities across the justice sector. This has included relationship weaving, providing consultancy, contributing to research and reports and delivering workshops and addresses for transformational justice. Some notable highlights include:


We have been working to change yesterday’s conversation about law and order to today’s conversation about community well-being, in order to truly transform the system by shifting public attitudes and beliefs.

We delivered our award winning podcast True Justice which has had over 15,000 streams and was named Best Original Podcast at the 2023 Voyager Media Awards

In April 2023, we partnered with The Workshop, to deliver the How to Talk about Crime and Justice workshop. This programme took 28 people representing 17 organisations through a six week course, supporting them to incorporate the learnings from our How to Talk about Crime & Justice guide into their day to day media and communication engagements.

We have remained a prominent and trusted voice in the media making 118 media appearances with 334 media impressions . 

We have grown our combined audience on social media to 14,078 and published 35 Action Updates to our database of now over 10,500 individuals.


We have been calling on decision makers to act by shifting policy and resources away from prisons and punishment and toward community interventions, health and well-being.

Delivered 3 key Campaigns through online and offline activities with a focus on COVID in Prisons, the Arohata Prison Transfers, and Drug law reform. 

Provided 13 Submissions, including the following notable highlights:

Contributed to 7 open Letters including the following notable highlights:

We have  engaged in several consultation opportunities with Government and/or other key justice enquiries including:

We have several strategic relationships with Justice Sector leaders including: 

We are members of the Aotearoa Justice Watch which is a group of independent organisations that care about justice and human rights. The purpose of AJW is to provide a safe way for people to tell their stories and have them recorded safely, and if needed, the AJW will use their strategic relationships to report or escalate the matter to ensure people are being kept safe if they come into contact with the justice system.

Your financial backing is vital to ensure we remain an essential voice for change.

We don't accept funding from the Government because it is essential that we can continue to be a critical voice for change, regardless of who is in power. This means we rely on the generosity of our supporters and funders; people like you, who share our vision for a safe, just and inclusive Aotearoa. 

Due to a significant change in the funding landscape, we are now more than ever dependent on individuals to support our work. Can you help secure our future?