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Illegitimacy A Major Factor In Violent Crime

"Figures released last week showing a six percent increase in violent crime were inevitable. We should only expect violent crime to continue to increase steadily, " warns DPB abolitionist Lindsay Mitchell.

"We are well into second and even third generation welfare dependency. The values concerning work, education, commitment, independence and self-control are being eroded through government hand-outs. Paying people who have already lost these values to bring more children into the world is one of the key reasons why violent crime is growing."

Just a year ago, according to Mrs Mitchell, a testimony before a US Subcommittee on Human Resources contained the following statement; "Illegitimacy is a major factor in America's crime problem. Lack of married parents, rather than race or poverty, is the principal factor in the crime rate. It has been known for some time that high rates of welfare dependency correlate with high crime rates among young men in the neighbourhood. But more important, a major 1988 study of 11,000 individuals found that 'the percentage of single-parent households with children between the ages of 12 and 20 is significantly associated with rates of violent crime and burglary.'

"Unfortunately, New Zealand governments have chosen to ignore the harmful effects of subsidised single parent upbringing," Mitchell continues. "The liberals continue to blame poverty for crime yet by material standards we have never had less poverty. They blame social exclusion for crime but benefits were designed to allow every individual to meaningfully participate in society."

"If this is what 'meaningfully' meant," Mrs Mitchell concludes," We don't need it. There is a lot to be learnt from the US welfare reforms, where welfare caseloads have dropped by an average of 58% since 1995 and for the first time ever the trend towards single parent families has been reversed. If a government seriously wants to tackle growing violence they must start by admitting current social policies are contributing factors. They are not the cure."

Lindsay Mitchell Campaigner for the abolition of the DPB
ph/fx 04 562 7944
e-mail dandl.mitchell@clear.net.nz

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