Give 'em the boot (camp)
THE State Government will employ a tough-love approach to juvenile sentencing with its proposed boot-camp reforms.
Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie said incarcerating young offenders had not worked previously in Queensland given that 32% of young people in detention had been there five times or more.
But he said the boot-camp trial offered an opportunity for rehabilitation and would deter offenders from a career in crime.
It comes as TransLink confirmed a teenager allegedly punched a Sunbus driver at Mooloolaba on May 20, the same day two teenagers held up a Maroochydore bottle shop with a knife.
"Permanent detention for young people is not the answer because ultimately they are going to get out of jail," Mr Bleijie said.
"And if they do there is a chance they will become career criminals who have been taught by the best in the 'college of crime'.
"What young people have to understand as well is youth
detention is a lot different to adult detention."
Police Minister Jack Dempsey said the boot-camp program, designed to mimic military training to instil discipline, offered the offenders a chance to rehabilitate but still sent a message that the government would not tolerate crime.
"Any form of crime, particularly youth crime, is very concerning," Mr Dempsey said. "That is why we are introducing intervention strategies and programs to work with at-risk juvenile offenders to try to give them the best start to their future.
"The Queensland Government is sending out a clear message that crime is unacceptable.
"We need to make sure that our youth, who will be our future, understand that."
Meanwhile, Mr Bleijie suggested a similar proactive approach to addressing the region's worrying record of armed hold-ups.
"I don't think anyone would say we are at the same stage as the Gold Coast, but we have to try to nip it in the bud before we get to that," he said.
"Absolutely we don't have enough police and I will be fighting with the other LNP members on the Coast to make sure we receive a portion of the 1100 new police officers to be deployed. I believe the best deterrent for criminals is to have more men and women on the beat."
LAW AND DISORDER
April 15: A 17-year-old man is alleged to have held up a service station at Nambour.
May 20: Two teens are alleged to have held up a Maroochydore bottle shop with a knife.
May 20: A teenager allegedly punched a bus driver in the stomach on Brisbane Rd, Mooloolaba