The dying days of the current Queensland State Election campaign are drawing out absolute rank Hail Mary’s from all and sundry, including opposition leader Deb Frecklington today announcing the LNP’s plans to, get this, trial a hard-and-fast nightly curfew that will be imposed on young people aged 17 and under in the north of the state.
Fronting media this morning, Frecklington announced that, if elected, her QLD LNP Government would trial a hard curfew for young people in both Cairns and Townsville, as part of broader punitive legislation that will vastly increase police powers.
The proposal would see children aged 14 and under prohibited from being outside after 8pm “without a good reason,” while young people aged between 15 and 17 would be given a 10pm curfew.
Frecklington confirmed that, under the proposal, $5 million would be committed to fund refuges in both cities. Any teens caught defying the curfew would be taken by police to the refuge until either a parent or social case worker came to collect them.
Speaking to media a short time ago, Frecklington asserted “this is about making sure parents become responsible for their children.”
“This is all about keeping our children and our community safe. I will not apologise for being tough on crime. I’ve come to this community too many times, I’ve me too many people who are hurting, they are in fact bleeding,” the opposition leader stated.
In an extremely thinly-veiled swipe at certain subsections of the population that the LNP leader referred to as “these youths,” Frecklington then claimed that youth crime is so rampant in Townsville that offenders are laughing in the face of authority.
“Police here in Townsville know who these youths are. They know the youths are laughing in the face of police officers. They are laughing in the face of the government because Labor are soft on crime,” she said.
The policy announcement was vague on specifics, and referred only to broad “common sense” principles as to what constitutes a “good reason” for someone aged 17 and under to be out at night.
It’s worth noting that this policy announcement contains no actual specifics regarding young people who work casual jobs late at night, or who may be the primary carer for someone.
But I’m sure that, if implemented, there is simply no way such a policy will receive anything other than an even-handed approach.
For what its worth, the latest polls put Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk’s incumbent Labor party up 52-48 on a two-party preferred basis.
The Queensland State Election is scheduled for Saturday, October 31st.