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  • Dale Last

1000 reasons to fund patrols

Member for Burdekin has called on the federal government to stump up funds to support a North Queensland community’s initiative to stamp out youth crime in the Burdekin.

Following the announcement that the federal government would provide a $1.3m bolster to community efforts in another regional community for night patrols Mr Last has called on the federal government to echo the funding for the Burdekin. “It’s already been demonstrated that these night patrols are extremely effective in reducing youth crime with one community seeing a staggering reduction in offending and there is no reason similar results couldn’t be achieved in the Burdekin,” Mr Last said.  

“In the month of January alone we have seen the number of unlawful entry offences committed in Ayr nearly triple from the previous month, while Home Hill has recently seen its highest number of unlawful entry offences in at least 12 months.”

Efforts within the community to curb youth offending in the area in recent weeks had resulted in a rally of more than 50 residents and business owners at the local police station and a petition, which had so far drawn close to 1000 signatures, for private security patrols and an increase in police officer numbers.

“This community has already demonstrated that they are willing to be pro-active on addressing youth crime in their community and it is now up to Labor governments on all levels to support it.”

“Lets not forget, community safety is first and foremost a state government responsibility and given that Labor is in power at a state and federal level, it shouldn’t be too much to ask for the Minister to knock on the door of his federal mates to provide the funds needed to make these patrols happen.”

Mr Last said having night patrols formalised and fully funded in the Burdekin would mean that business owners and residents were not being left out of pocket in a bid to improve community safety.

“At a time when costs of living are impacting everyone, we are seeing community members using their own vehicles and fuel to keep their community safe and victims of crime left out of pocket for repairs and increased security.”

“The initiative already has the support of the Federal Member for Dawson Andrew Willcox and given the response to the ongoing petition this community has sent a clear message they are not willing to let this issue lie.”

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