At last! A politician with the guts and common sense to talk tough on crime. Labour touchy feely claptrap has had a disastrous effect on crime in this country, and in an article in the Sun today, Boris Johnson speaks out in favour of proper sentences, but also the right sort of rehabilitation.
Boris say: “Soft is the perfect way to enjoy French cheese, but not how we should approach punishing criminals. It’s time to stop offering shorter sentences and get-out clauses.
The Met Police is currently doing the biggest project in its history, Operation Target, which is cracking down on prolific robbers and burglars after three years of falling crime in London. In little over a week the results have been superb – over 900 arrests and the recovery of firearms, drugs and tons of stolen property.
I helped them launch it and took part in a dawn raid on suspected drugs dens. I can’t say the people inside the raided homes were particularly pleased to see me.
Nor should they smile at the prospect of jail. Prison shouldn’t be about sitting on a mattress, playing video games and networking with seasoned criminals. Prison should change people and if it doesn’t they shouldn’t be let out.
I’ve taken a different approach to the revolving door of offending with the prison wing – Heron – I opened at Feltham Young Offenders Institute. On the wing we’ve managed to halve that national youth re-offending rate of 78 per cent by allocating each prisoner an individual “motivational”member of staff who helps them sort out their lives during their jail term, then works with them for a year after their release. The prisoners are pushed into further education, helped to apply for jobs and we’ve even got a few into university.
If the boys start to commit crimes again, we don’t pay the staff. It’s payment by results. And it’s a powerful incentive. It’s not soft but sensible.
I’m now pushing for a similar approach to be adopted more widely across councils, where we can offer payments to agencies who help keep local criminals on the straight and narrow.
In short, local councils, police and the criminal justice system need to work hand in hand to stop the spread of people gearing towards a life time of criminality – career criminals. It’s the only way we can stop the revolving door of criminality.
I’m meeting the key heads of these agencies today and I will urge them to support our proven model of rehabilitation. Let’s all get behind a solution that can really turn around the lives of those entrenched in crime: “No rehab, no release.”
Boris has full blooded, sensible, well thought out policies on every subject that remain true to the values of Conservatism. The government of our country is being fatally diluted because of the link with the Lib Dems. Too many compromises are being made, but far worse than that, extreme Lib Dem policies are being forced on us to keep the coalition happy, that are not what we voted for. Boris would never do that. He has the right ideas to set the country back on track, and the strength and communication skills to persuade the country that his way is the right way. In fact the only thing that is floppy about him is his hair.