People who assault police, prison guards or emergency service providers face tougher penalties when convicted.
Parliament's passed into law legislation that makes such attacks an aggravating feature at sentencing.
Justice Minister Judith Collins says frontline staff have to work in highly dangerous situations in the course of their daily duties and can't leave when things get dangerous.
"These workers are the first and last port of call and for that reason we are making sure that the law recognises the importance of the contribution they make to society."
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