The Council of the Auckland Justices of the Peace Association held a virtual monthly meeting on 8 April 2020.
Due to Covid-19 conditions, the Council met remotely for the first time using the Zoom platform. Each Council member was seen and could see and hear all the others – a most successful adaptation to our face-to-face process.
The agenda was again prepared and accessed by all the Council using a single Google Docs document. The agenda was as usual pre-circulated and along with other documents, pre-read.
Significant communication had been maintained in the weeks leading up to the national lock-down. Discussion confirmed that Facebook, AJPA website and emails had been well-utilised, communicating with Members regarding:
Protective measures when working with clients
Safe techniques to continue providing services
Alternative locations as first CABs then Libraries closed
Appropriate withdrawal of Justices with age, health, or family concerns
The closure of all Justice of the Peace services as mandated by the Chief District Court Judge
It was agreed that we were reluctant to withdraw services to the public, but the emergency left no alternatives.
Dates for future meetings were at this stage confirmed:
20 September 2020 for our Regional Meeting and AGM
6 March 2021 for the Coordinators’ and Rosterers’ Meeting
Concerns were noted about the ongoing loss of the office phone line – which only the Ministry of Justice can intervene. Messages for contacting the Registrar and Administrator by mobile phone have been positioned
Finance discussion included ensuring the Lotteries Board Grant will have been utilised by financial YE, particularly for the provision to Members of stamps; and additional banners.
Sadly not one of the Hub sessions of Professional Development was completed prior to lock-down cancellations – these will be rescheduled. However, an on-line Accreditation Study group will start on April 13, and has had lots of interest.
Judicial Justices are not sitting at present, but Issuing Officers, Nominated Persons, and Section 9 roles are considered essential services.
The social function at Eden Gardens was most enjoyable, and enabled some good social interaction – just before lock-down.
Terry Holding was congratulated on his interim appointment as Auckland Regional Representative to Royal Federation, replacing Garry Nicholls who was elected as the Vice President at the Royal Federation Conference in February.
Warm wishes for a safe and effective lock-down were shared with the Council.