House debates

Thursday, 9 March 2023

Statements by Members

Queensland: Crime

1:56 pm

Photo of Phillip ThompsonPhillip Thompson (Herbert, Liberal National Party, Shadow Assistant Minister for Defence) Share this | | Hansard source

Eight long years ago, under Annastacia Palaszczuk, the Queensland state Labor government watered down the state's youth crime laws. Queenslanders have been paying the price ever since. Thousands of victims later, after community rallies begging for change and sustained political pressure, the Premier has finally admitted she got it wrong. A couple of weeks ago, the state Labor government adopted our policy to introduce breach of bail as an offence for young offenders. It's a policy that they have said over and over again won't work. Now, at five minutes to midnight—before an election—we have a backflip of incredible proportions. It just goes to show that when the community is united and relentless, we can drag even the most useless government to action.

But how many thousands of frightening home invasions could have been avoided if this arrogant Premier hadn't held out on this? How many break-ins and stolen cars could have been prevented? How many lives could have been saved? The people of Townsville deserve better from their state government. Unfortunately, this move won't solve all of our city's crime woes. Labor still won't remove detention as a last resort from the youth justice legislation. That means a magistrate has to go through at least 10 other sentencing options before sending someone for detention.

And what is the federal Labor government doing? Cutting the Safer Communities program and raising the age of criminal responsibility. Labor is failing— (Time expired)