Knoll argues against tougher youth sentences

Youth offenders should not be sentenced like adults, Member for Schubert Stephan Knoll says.

In state Parliament last week, he argued against a government proposal to toughen penalties for young criminals, saying it would just lead to repeat offending.

“We are talking about young people, mostly from difficult circumstances, ... who, through better preventative efforts and better rehabilitative efforts, can actually go on to be fully contributing members of our society,” he said.

“We believe (this proposal) is going to lead to worse outcomes, not better.

“We are open to other approaches … to make our community safer.”

Attorney-General John Rau introduced the proposal to Parliament a year ago, after a teenager who caused a fatal crash on the Southern Expressway was sentenced to less than three-and-a-half years in prison.