Arthur Gorrie Photo Craig Warhurst / The Gympie Times
Arthur Gorrie Photo Craig Warhurst / The Gympie Times Craig Warhurst

Long year for young prisoners

IT IS terrifying to imagine the fate of a slightly built 17-year-old boy finding himself in the adult prison system, as one such youth soon will.

"I can't do it, Mum,” the young man said, weeping from the dock in Gympie as the magistrate pondered her options, or lack of them.

That story, elswewhere on this site, tells of a desperate young man whose background of anxiety issues means he will be destroyed.

"It's only for two days,” his mother called out, as the magistrate set his matter down for Thursday.

Where he goes after possible sentencing is another matter. But what is to be done with a bail offender, if he is found to be such, with an already substantial criminal record?

How is society to be protected from such a person?

How is the legal system supposed to function if people granted bail simply ignore its conditions?

The Queensland government announced last week that our state will cease within a year to be the only one in Australia that puts children in the adult prison system.

Of course, as the LNP points out, we will now have to worry about how to protect 10-year-olds in detention from adult-sized 17-year-old criminals.

The answer does not seem too hard to identify, however.

You separate them into age groups. Is that too hard?

Gympie Times

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