The Ontario Progressive Conservative Party has released its report on curbing youth violence and proposes recommendations that I think everyone should review, especially during this federal election.
The proposals include stemming the flow of illegal weapons into Ontario, creating and funding programs to help those at risk, programs to eliminate the dependence on crime to escape poverty, and ensuring adequate levels of policing in areas needing it. It also includes revisiting the Safe Schools Act.
The PC Party held a summit on youth violence in June 2005, with community and legal activists, and came up with the following four main themes:
- The importance of early intervention, supporting parenting programs and educating children on right and wrong, early.
- Stronger and visible police presence, not just to enforce laws, but to actively participate in community programs.
- Separating youth violence from other minor youth crime - including revisiting the Safe Schools Act.
- More programs to help in the transition between school and the workforce, and more general programs to help youth in any change of their lives, including reintegrating from incarceration back into general society.
The report also makes specific recommendations that I think everyone should peruse. I would have preferred the report to take less jabs at the current provincial Liberal government (as much as I think they are warranted), but if you skip those, you get a meaningful set of recommendations based upon thoughtful input by those impacted and those on the front line.
There will be a lot of promises made during this election about how to stop violence, and I encourage you to review this report and reflect upon them.
You can find the full report here.