Reports today of an alarming increasing in violent youth offending again highlight Daniel Andrews’ failure to keep young Victorians on the right path and out of a life of crime.
Data from Victoria’s independent Crime Statistics Agency has confirmed a deeply concerning spike in violent offending being committed by those aged between 10 and 14, including:
- Violent robberies jumping 85 per cent over the last 5 years.
- More than one serious assault being committed each and every day.
- Assaults on police and emergency workers increasing from 39 in 2016 to 65 in 2020 – a 66.6 per cent increase.
Despite repeated calls from the Victorian Liberal Nationals and Police Veterans, Victoria remains the only state in Australia that does not currently have a comprehensive Police in Schools program, after it was axed by the former Bracks Labor Government in 2005.
Well-organised Police in Schools programs have a key role to play in keeping at risk youth engaged in education, community and employment whilst building respect for frontline Victoria Police officers.
With the 15-19 year old age bracket now the largest cohort of offenders in violent crimes, Daniel Andrews should be embracing Police in Schools programs – not turning his back on them.
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Police and Community Safety, David Southwick:
“Andrews has dropped the ball on tackling youth crime and is leaving frontline police and local communities to pick up the pieces.
“With youth offences on the rise and a lack of respect for our police, we need to be looking at new ways to educate and divert children away from a life of crime.
“The Victorian Liberal Nationals proposed a Police in Schools initiative prior to the last election, and believe such programs are needed to keep kids engaged with education and community, and rebuild respect between young people and our police.”