North-Queensland solution to fill Brisbane’s policy void

North-Queensland solution to fill Brisbane’s policy void

Seven years.

Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) announced our Relocation Sentencing Policy seven long years ago.  Detailing the North-Queensland developed solution that we know will work – remote relocation, mandatory sentencing for repeat offenders, fixed term sentencing, and intensive rehabilitation.

Those who do the crime must do the time.  There must be consequences.

KAP have spent seven years trail-blazing the importance of genuine youth justice reform.  Seven years of promoting our policy both here in Queensland, as well as on the national stage in Canberra.

On the surface, it would appear the tide is turning.  The North-Queensland developed KAP youth crime policy is finding its way into the policy announcements from Brisbane and Canberra.

So-called policy makers from Brisbane and Canberra have progressively made announcements of ‘revolutionary’ new approaches to youth justice, but to the KAP they are all quite familiar concepts.

Steven Miles has extended the on-country relocation program, the Federal LNP have announced a policy of ‘outback camps’ for young offenders, and the Queensland LNP recently spruiked to the media that they would remove the policy of detention as a last resort.

All policy positions the KAP have been promoting for years.

And just on that announcement by LNP Leader David Crisafulli, memories must not run too long in Brisbane.  Only a few years ago, in 2021, both sides of the Parliament voted down amendments that I introduced, removing the detention as a last resort policy – the very policy that David Crisafulli announced to the media this week.

Since KAP announced our Relocation Policy we have all seen the Queensland we know and love be degraded day by day, by ever increasing rates of senseless youth offending.

More than fifty-two thousand young offenders had proceedings commenced against them by the Queensland Police Service in 2021-22.  The highest in ten years.

Life in our towns and cities is now such that you do not have to wait for the morning newspaper or radio report to hear about the latest youth crime – you are now on alert, waiting for the night that it will be your turn, sharing lived experiences of assault, senseless vandalism, and general terrorising with your neighbours.

In North Queensland we have known for years the scourge that youth crime is and was developing into.  We have known that the system is fundamentally broken, and we have been telling those who think they know best in Brisbane and Canberra.


The only answer is to take the lead from our First Australians.  The term ‘Buje-ka’ is a First Australian term meaning banishment, a form of punishment administered to those who broke the rules or tribal laws of the time.

KAP have listened and learned from the experience and knowledge developed over eons.  And it is high time that this knowledge is implemented in full, to put the brakes on the insidious youth crime crisis taking over Queensland.

Piecemeal policy adoption is one thing, but real action is another.

Action must be more than announcements, and we need all four pillars of the KAP Relocation Policy implemented, and as a matter of urgency.

Arresting the youth crime spree spiraling out of control cannot wait for an election or for a media opportunity.  The time for action was seven years ago.

Queenslanders cannot wait another day.


Robbie Katter
Member for Traeger

4 April 2024

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