The Christchurch earthquake has bought both the best out of people and unfortunately the worst. To date the best has clearly surpassed the worst and tonight's Sunday's program on TV1 which included a segment on a reporter whose house was badly damaged reinforced this message. The reporter commented on how generous the friends from down the street had been in opening their house up to them. And how at this time it was so important to be with others sharing what they had been through. It would have been awful to be alone. It was a great story put together well by TV1.
However, unfortunately the worst in human nature has come out as people have attempted to loot and scam people at a time when everyone's life has been turned on its head. These criminals have no conscious, no empathy and display behaviour that most humans find very hard to comprehend. These are the same types who cheat on social welfare, ACC and will no doubt target the Red Cross as that organisation tries to help the worst affected vistims of the earthquake. It is very important that if anyone has any information on this behaviour, do not ignore it. It robs the most deserving of our support. You can provide that information to the police or if you don't want to be identified provide the information to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. Crimestoppers will get that information quickly to the Police.
It is heartening that individuals are increasingly using Crimestoppers to provide information about criminals and criminal behaviour. When I speak to community groups they are very supportive and understand that many in the community are intimidated against giving information about criminals and the criminal behaviour they indulge in. Anonymity offered by Crimestoppers empowers the individual to do something about crime.