Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I Worry About the Future

I've just read a news article where a recommendation has been made to make public transport free for the under 18s to reduce the number of kids facing court.

Free rides could cut youth crime - report

VICTORIA should consider making public transport free for under-18s to reduce the number of juveniles facing court charged with minor offences such as fare evasion, a parliamentary report says.

The committee report found many young people, including the homeless and disadvantaged, wind up in the courts because they cannot pay fines.

Some have multiple fines for fare evasion and other "add-on'' transit offences, such as offensive behaviour or resisting police.

If they are dragged through the courts for multiple "petty'' offences, they risk entrenching themselves in the system, the report says.

"This ... can lead these youth further into the criminal justice system through both exposure to the court system and the effects of criminalisation and stigmatisation,'' it says.

The report recommends the Department of Transport undertake a feasibility study into providing free public transport for minors to break the cycle of compounding petty crime.

The recommendation was part of an inquiry into strategies to prevent high-volume offending by young people.

The report, by the parliamentary drugs and crime prevention committee, was tabled in the Victorian parliament on Tuesday.

Really? Have we really got to a place where the best way society has to stop kids offending is make things no longer against the law?

BTW I don't live in Victoria, but you can be sure that if it is happening in that State it will end up happening here.

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