Dametto to Govt: Fix crime or lose power

HINCHINBROOK MP Nick Dametto has given a stinging warning to the State Labor Government over North Queensland’s crime crisis – fix the problem or face electoral oblivion.

In a stirring speech delivered in parliament last week, Mr Dametto painted a grim picture of crime in the North, describing what has become a daily occurrence for local residents.

“Every afternoon good, hardworking people, taxpayers who fund this parliament, are packing up their job sites, places of work and for some their businesses for the day. They tidy up and lock up, close the tills and activate their alarms in a bid to save themselves from the criminals that lurk in the dark of night,” the Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) MP told parliament.

“As homeowners wash up and lock up their homes of an evening, they hide their car keys and their wallets in a safe spot in a bid to protect themselves against what lurks in the night and what might come. Every morning I wake up wondering what devastation happened last night. Is my car still out the front and who will call me today to tell me their business has been broken into?

“I am standing here to put the government on notice that the people of Hinchinbrook do not care how it fixes this property crime problem; just fix it now.”
Mr Dametto told parliament he believed “when the government took away people’s rights to protect their own property with force and to retaliate against perpetrators, it took on the responsibility of protecting those people”.

“Every Queenslander has a right to feel safe in their own homes. It is time to put a stop to the break-ins or the reality is that the people will ultimately put a stop to this governance,” he concluded in his speech.

Mr Dametto has personally been a victim of crime after his custom car trailer was stolen earlier this year.

“I have had first-hand experience of this type of theft on innocent people. I‘ve worked too hard to be able to afford my car trailer than to have some lowlife take it from me,” he said.

“While I was able to recover my trailer, the point remains. North Queenslanders want action and they want this State Labor Government to wake up and get tough on crime.”

Mr Dametto urged the government to end the revolving door of justice with soft, “slap on the wrist policies” and a preference to put offenders out on bail, avoiding any real punishment.

“The bottom line is people are craving a solution to this crime crisis that has entered every corner of our region, whether that’s building more prisons or legislating harsher penalties that act as a real deterrent,” he said.

“I urge the government to consider the KAP’s youth relocation sentencing policy, which would banish young offenders from the community to be sent to a remote location to work on the land and learn life skills. This will go some way to stopping criminal behaviour at the start.”

Nick Dametto MP