Police Minister Mark Ryan used a visit to Mount Isa this week to say youth crime statistics show the government's approach is working.
Mr Ryan was in town Monday primarily to encourage COVID vaccinations but also spoke on his portfolio and the work police and other agencies were doing to address youth crime.
"We've got a focused campaign across the state, in particular the north, whether it's Townsville, Cairns or Mount Isa around engaging earlier in youth crime and there are some very positive results coming out of Mount Isa," Mr Ryan said.
Mr Ryan cited "good engagement" around the On Country program and the proactive work with police.
"Of course we know there continues to be challenges with young people engaging with the criminal justice system but you've got to shift the focus before any crime happens rather than being reactionary all the time and what we are seeing in Mount Isa is some of the rubber hitting the road on that," he said.
"We're seeing the statistics heading in the right direction but we know there is more work to be done and that's why we've got this youth crime task force and additional resource going into the youth justice department and policing to make that difference in those young people's lives because if we can get people out of the criminal justice system not only is it good for them in the future but it is also good for the community."
In 2020 the MONA Aboriginal corporation won a four year contract to deliver the On Country program in Mount Isa under which courts and the police will have powers to refer high risk, 10 to 17-year-old Indigenous offenders to the program for up to two months under the supervision, guidance and mentoring of Elders and Traditional Owners
However the KAP calls the program a "beachside holiday" saying the government doesn't understand the north's crime crisis and it wants a relocation sentencing policy which removes offenders 800km away from Townsville.
The Mount Isa chamber of commerce told a parliamentary public hearing earlier this year that a survey they ran showed a large number of its members have suffered property crime in recent years.
In July the Queensland Family and Child Commission's report into youth crime found society needed to address the rights and wellbeing of young people rather than defaulting to a criminal justice response.
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