“Adult Crime, Adult Time”: Queensland LNP Promises Tougher Punishment for Juvenile Offenders

This promise came after federal coalition Leader Peter Dutton criticised the Labor government’s handling of health services

Juveniles convicted of serious crimes in Queensland will face the same harsh penalties as adult offenders under a major pre-election promise by the Liberal National Party (LNP). Opposition Leader David Crisafulli announced during the annual LNP state convention on Sunday, positioning law and order as a central theme of his campaign, just 111 days before the October 26 election.

Addressing party supporters in Brisbane, Crisafulli vowed that youths found guilty of crimes such as murder, manslaughter, grievous bodily harm, dangerous operation and unlawful use of a motor vehicle would be sentenced as adults.

“If you make the choice to commit adult crimes, you should know we have made the choice to ensure there are consequences for that behaviour,” Crisafulli declared.

“We will restore consequences for actions for young criminals – adult crime, adult time.”

- Advertisement -

The Labor government’s handling of youth justice has been under scrutiny following a series of violent incidents involving young people, raising public concerns about rising youth crime across the state. However, Crisafulli’s proposal is expected to face backlash from legal and children’s rights groups who may view the policy as overly punitive.

Image Source: x/Twitter @LNPQLD
Image Source: x/Twitter @LNPQLD

Crisafulli accused the current state government of “cuddling young criminals” and outlined plans for intensive post-release supervision to aid in the rehabilitation of young offenders.

“We can’t just release a young offender into society,” he said.

“We’ll partner with the community sector to work with young people in detention, in partnership with their youth justice caseworker, to develop a relationship which can be maintained when they are released.”

The proposed policy includes funding for individual 12-month post-release plans to help young offenders reintegrate into society and prevent recidivism. This approach aims to ensure continuous support and supervision for youths after their release from detention.

According to an Australia Bureau of Statistics crime report published in February, there were nearly 11,000 offenders aged 10 to 17 in Queensland in 2022/23, a six per cent increase from the previous year. The most common offences were acts intended to cause injury (23 per cent) and theft (17 per cent).

Queensland Premier Steven Miles dismissed Crisafulli’s proposal as “just another slick slogan.”

- Advertisement -

He emphasised the importance of early intervention and crime prevention. “The fact is that we want to intervene early and prevent crimes before they occur, and that’s why we have a comprehensive community safety program,” Miles said.

In addition to his law and order agenda, Crisafulli pledged to provide live hospital data within 100 days if the LNP wins government. This promise came after federal coalition Leader Peter Dutton criticised the Labor government’s handling of health services at the convention on Saturday, highlighting issues such as ambulance ramping, which has reached a record 45 per cent.

Dutton endorsed Crisafulli as a thoughtful and practical leader with a clear plan to “end Queenslanders’ despair” and rejuvenate the state.

“The LNP’s policies are not only practical, they offer hope for Queenslanders that better times are ahead,”

Dutton stated.

While Crisafulli avoided addressing the federal party’s nuclear energy plans, the topic remains a point of contention. Dutton supports building reactors to supply nuclear energy, a stance not shared by Crisafulli, who has repeatedly stated that nuclear energy is not part of his plan. Queensland currently bans nuclear reactors under the Nuclear Facilities Prohibition Act 2007.

As the election approaches, the LNP’s focus on tougher penalties for juvenile offenders and improvements in public services aims to resonate with voters concerned about crime and quality of life in Queensland.

Support Our Journalism

Global Indian Diaspora and Australia’s multicultural communities need fair, non-hyphenated, and questioning journalism, packed with on-ground reporting. The Australia Today – with exceptional reporters, columnists, and editors – is doing just that. Sustaining this needs support from wonderful readers like you.

Whether you live in Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, the United States of America, or India you can take a paid subscription by clicking Patreon and support honest and fearless journalism.