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Youth Crime Rates Must Be Tackled

Youth Crime Rates Must Be Tackled

Tuesday 2 Jul 2002 Dr Muriel Newman Press Releases -- Crime & Justice

ACT Northland-based MP Dr Muriel Newman told a Grey Power meeting in Whangarei that ACT was committed to stamping out youth crime - which has been soaring in Northland.

"Youth crime statistics released recently show that there was a staggering 80 percent rise in youth crime in Northland between 1994 and 2001 - with over 2500 offences committed last year. Arrests for violent youth crime more than doubled over the same period.

"An unpublished crime survey which the Government is withholding shows that women are at more risk of violent crime in New Zealand than in any other OECD country. Our crime rates are generally worse than those in the United States.

"This Government ignored the clear message of 92 percent of New Zealanders wanting a tougher stance on crime. It has gone soft. It has introduced new legislation which slashes prison terms. It is building prisons that look like holiday camps and it has cut police operational budgets.

"Our zero tolerance approach to crime - picking up on the hugely successful `broken windows' approach in New York will tackle youth crime particularly - head on. We'll get tough with the youth offenders.

"Our truth in sentencing policy will make sure offenders serve the full court-imposed sentence.

"ACT is the only party offering genuine solutions to the causes of crime," Dr Newman said.

For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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