Friday, August 08, 2008

LibDems soft on crime - again

Newcastle LibDems wanted to teach young people how to spray paint graffiti.

The LibDems rarely miss an opportunity to prove that leopards never change their spots.

By pledging to remove the possibility of a gaol sentence for young people convicted of breaching an ASBO, the Lib Dems have forfeited the right to be taken seriously on the subject of anti-social behaviour (ASB).

Will the Lib Dems never realise that sometimes prison is the right solution for serious offenders?

Labour meanwhile is giving police and communities new powers to tackle ASB, investing in neighbourhood policing and modernising our criminal justice system. The Government has put aside almost £100m for measures which will cut youth crime in the short term and prevent it in the long term. Labour's policies are working and we've seen a reduction in the frequency of juvenile re-offending of 17.4% between 2000 and 2005.

The Lib Dems opposed Labour's measures against Labour's tough anti-social behaviour measures, against Labour's measures to break up teen gangs, against measures to restrict the sale of graffiti spray paint to teenagers, against sending teenage criminals to court and against jail sentences for drug possession.

It's a sorry record, and should be a warning to residents in Darlington about how low down tackling ASB would be in any LibDem-influenced administration.


Mr Pierpoint said...

I would be quite happy to pledge the removal of jail time for breaking an ASBO only if it was to be substituted for the "noose" or the birch.

Mike Barker said...

I don't usually bother to respond to young Nick's Lib Dem baiting, in which, were it an Olympic sport, he would not doubt lead Team GB to gold in 2012, however, for the record:

Liberal Democrats believe that young people who commit minor criminal offences or get involved in antisocial behaviour should face effective restorative justice rather than prosecution in the courts.

Our new crime strategy will mean that children who admit their guilt would be punished by panels of local people, and would have to put right their crimes through community sentences as cleaning up graffiti.

Our new proposals also include the formation of a new youth volunteer force to carry out community projects, which will serve to create more community identity and instill a sense of civic pride in young people.

Chris Huhne, the Lib Dem Shadow Home Secretary, said that Labour had “criminalised a generation of young people”.

There are more young people in prison in the UK than anywhere else in Europe, some of whom are there for very minor offences. And yet crime continues to rise amongst the young. In fact, those sent to prison as children are far more likely to re-offend. The government is spending 11 times more public money on locking young people up than on preventative measures, and it simply isn’t working.

Restorative justice plans as proposed by Lib Dems mean that young offenders may be forced meet victims and see the consequences of their crimes. Moving beyond punishment of offenders, Lib Dems will also tackle youth alcohol problems. Shops that sell alcohol to under-18s could face being stripped of their licence at the first offence.

Gun- and knife-crime hotspots will be targeted with high-profile policing, with extensive use of intelligence-led stop-and-search powers, and there will be a Police Community Support Officer in every neighbourhood whose job it will be to work with young people, and the introduction of a Police Cadet scheme to improve relations between young people and the police.

Chris Huhne said: “If we want to tackle the problem of youth crime, we need to take action early to stop kids from embarking on a life of crime before it’s too late. The old parties are falling over each other trying to be tough on crime, but nothing is being done do stop young people getting sucked in to a cycle of crime. Ministers know that programmes to divert kids away from crime work, and are even happy to promote such projects. However, they have failed to fund them properly in favour of punitive policies that grab headlines but achieve little. It is time for a new approach to youth justice which both prevents crime and confronts young people with their actions if they do break the law.”

Mr Pierpoint said...

Mike sorry but hat is the biggest load of codswallop I have heard/read since we were going to send the little angels on safari etc.
The reason Labour has allegedly “criminalised a generation of young people”.is because these kids are a bunch of out of control thugs thanks to you lot taking away all Police powers and the like.
What we need is more Police and to give them back the powers their hard jobs demand, arming them if need be, with tazers as a minimum.
But no you libdems want to molley coddle them back into society doing gardening in the community, how nice then they can "case the joint" of your grannys house while "working in the community".
It must be so nice living in your ivory tower where all "children are angels and ferocious dogs are banned"
Wake up and live in the real world they are scum and should be locked up if they do wrong who cares if they re-offend it simply means they have not learnt their lesson yet so lock them up again!!!

Mike Barker said...

On the contrary, a key point of our manifesto for the last General Election was to use a large chunk of the obscene amounts of money Labour is sinking into the ID cards scheme to put more police out on our streets. Lib Dems are stronger than Labour on supporting our police with real money.
Of course some people are scum and need to be locked up, but Labour's policy of criminalising a swathe of young people is clearly not working.
People feel less safe; violent, knife and youth crime is rising, yet Labour fails to deal with the cause of this crime.
Taking a more flexible route, and acknowledging that funding imaginative, preventative and rehabilitative work - particularly with young people - is more important than banging people up, will have more effect on crime in the long run than sending kids to prison "finishing school".

Anonymous said...

ID cards

Another load of Nu-Labour twaddle!

Sign up today

Anonymous said...

becasue id cards contain more information than wahts already collated anyway?

erm, no. probably less.