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Labour’s broken promise No 5: Cutting youth crime

Simon Power MP
National Party Justice & Corrections Spokesman

3 October 2008

Labour’s broken promise No 5 on law and order:
Cutting youth crime

The Labour Government has still not delivered on promises to cut youth offending, says National’s Justice & Corrections spokesman, Simon Power.

Helen Clark pledged in 1999 to ‘crack down on youth crime’, but here they are nine years later about to go into an election with promises such as that unfulfilled and on the back of crime statistics that make very grim reading.

“Those statistics, out this week, reveal the extent of the problem since Labour became the Government.

“Since 1999/00, violence by 14- to 16-year-olds has increased by an alarming 52%, from 3,301 to 5,029 offences.

“But it’s the kind of violent crimes they are being apprehended for that are of even more concern. They show:

• Robberies up 94%, from 262 to 508.
• Intimidation and threats up 69%, from 793 to 1,338.
• Grievous assaults up 122%, from 197 to 437.
• Serious assaults up 53%, from 757 to 1,155.
• Minor assaults up 20%, from 1,259 to 1,511
• Group assemblies up 139%, from 28 to 67.

“But it gets worse.

“In 2007/08 alone there were eight 14- to 16-year-olds apprehended for homicide, including five murders and one for manslaughter, as well as two attempted murders. That compares to just one homicide in 1999/00.

“These are staggering numbers, and remember that these are mostly school-kids, and Labour promised to help them.

“At the 2002 election, Labour also promised ‘more support for proven programmes to cut youth offending’.

“But instead of being cut, violent youth crime has continued its relentless increase.

“Labour have failed to follow through on their promises – National will not.”

See National’s Youth Justice Policy:


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