WELLS (Rowville) (13:47:39) — This statement condemns the Andrews Labor government for its appalling mismanagement of the Victorian justice system, as seen in the government’s own department of justice annual report released this month. The report shows reoffending by criminals on community correction orders (CCOs) continues to rise at an enormous rate. Three years ago it was 20.8 per cent of those on CCOs, now it is 33.1 per cent.
Labor’s record on rehabilitating prisoners is even worse: 43.6 per cent of prisoners in this state reoffend and end up back in prison. It is not surprising that the department of justice report shows key benchmarks not being met for prisoner involvement in education, employment and delivery of service agreements. The report is a wake-up call that Labor’s soft on sentencing policies are simply not working. Yet Labor still rejects coalition calls to introduce mandatory minimum sentences for repeat offenders.
While Labor cuts frontline police numbers per capita, it has recruited non-sworn public servants to the justice department at more than three times the rate of police. Labor’s warped funding priorities are creating a dysfunctional cycle, with fewer police at the front line to prevent crime and more offenders churned back through our over-burdened justice system. Only a coalition government will crack down on crime and fix our broken justice system.