16 Nov STATEMENT FROM ROBBIE KATTER MP: ATKINSON YOUTH CRIME REPORT
The updated Atkinson Report into youth crime in Queensland was released late last night and proves to Queenslanders what we have known all along.
Youth offenders are being further criminalised by a broken youth justice system that fails on all fronts – it is neither protecting communities nor is it effectively reforming or deterring recidivist offenders.
The Palaszczuk Labor Government is paralysed by this issue, but it is a simple fact that in 2022 Queensland children are committing more serious and violent offences than ever before.
Our communities are under perpetual attack, particularly in the North and, in the last three years (2019-2021):
- 10 per cent more young offenders committed a crime while on bail
- 29 per cent more young offenders committed “serious” offences while on bail
- 30 per cent more young offenders committed an offence leading to death or harm while on bail.
Children are being held in custody for an average of 40 days – simply a blip on the radar and a woeful indictment on not only how seriously the government takes the harm these kids are causing to communities but also how invested it is in their reform.
Today the KAP is calling on the Palaszczuk Labor Government to formally withdraw from any national discussions in relation to raising the age of the criminal responsibility, which would effectively destroy any legal avenue for dealing with youth offenders under 14.
The level of harm that could be wrought on the community as a result would be unbearable.
We want to see stricter youth justice laws in place and an alternative sentencing model – known as Relocation Sentencing – trialled as matter of urgency.
Get these kids out of town and removed from the environments that have led them down this path.
Give them, and our communities, a chance.