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Victims’ lobby applauds initiatives to reduce youth offendin

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Victims’ lobby applauds initiatives to reduce youth offending

The Sensible Sentencing Trust is giving a cautious thumbs-up to Government plans to reduce youth offending.

Trust Spokesman, Garth McVicar said the announcement by Associate Justice Minister Chester Borrows on the Youth Crime Action Plan and Social Development Minister Paula Bennett’s announcement that welfare recipients with dependent children will have obligations and responsibilities focused on the health and wellbeing of their children are “significant steps in the right direction”.


“Most of what has been announced today is simply common-sense and something Sensible Sentencing Trust [SST] has been lobbying for and is supportive of.”

The recommendations include a requirement that beneficiaries with dependent children meet a number of obligations.

• ensure their children are attending school when they are legally required to;

• ensure their children participate in approved early childhood education once their child reaches three years of age.

The Youth Crime Action Plan announced by associate Justice Minister Chester Borrows is intended to improve support for and coordination between frontline youth justice staff, service providers, families, schools and communities. It will identify what’s working well in the current system – as well as areas where there is room for improvement – and come up with practical solutions that make a real difference in communities and the lives of young people.

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Mr. McVicar said SST was prepared to give the plans a cautious ‘thumbs-up’ but warned that previous attempts to get some personal accountability and responsibility back into society and the justice system had been hi-jacked by promoters of ‘liberal-lunacy’.


“Many of these people had well meaning ideas in theory but ‘liberal-lunacy’ has been a disastrous social experiment that has caused an escalation in violent crime and created thousands of victims.”


ENDS

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