Reports today that Victoria Police command has moved to shut down a volunteer run Police in Schools program is a backwards step against tackling Victoria’s youth crime crisis under the Andrews Labor Government.
Under Andrews, Victoria remains the only state in Australia that does not currently have a Police in Schools program following the axing by the Labor Government in 2005.
Labor’s inaction on youth offending has forced volunteer police veterans to fill the void and establish a Police in Schools program designed to reduce youth offending and diverting at risk students away from a life of crime.
With 15-19 year olds now the largest cohort of offenders in violent crimes, Andrews should be embracing the Police in Schools programs – not shutting it down.
The Victorian Liberal Nationals supported a Police in Schools program prior to the November 2018 election and believe such programs deserve the full support of government.
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Police and Community Safety, David Southwick:
“Andrews has dropped the ball on tackling youth crime and its now being left to retired police volunteers 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 ways to educate and divert children away from a life of crime.
“It makes sense to utilise the skills and experience of our police veterans in a structured schools program and should it be supported by the Government.”