Tough on crime approach ´a failure´

The tough anti-crime measures introduced by prime minister Jan Peter Balkenende during his first term in office have been criticised as largely ineffective by the government’s social policy advisory unit SCP.

And some measures, such as the re-education camps for young offenders like Glenn Mills (modelled on the US boot camps) actually encourage crime, the SCP says.
Other measures, such as longer prison sentences for minor offences, increasing the number of police officers on the street and camera monitoring had never been properly evaluated before being introduced, the SCP says.
And while having more police on the street does make people feel safer and has an effect on crime, camera surveillance has a limited effect, the researchers said.
The SCP argues that people found guilty of minor crimes should not be given long sentences and some juvenile offenders should not be given a criminal record at all. Having a criminal record is a social stigma and makes it easier to reoffend, the SCP says.
Meanwhile, Amsterdam police have launched a website featuring security camera pictures and videos of armed robberies which they hope will lead to more arrests, the Telegraaf reports on Wednesday.
‘We would ask shopkeepers to hang their cameras up properly because we do need clear images,’ said city police chief Bernard Welten.

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