Boot camp decision time for Cairns
MORE than one Cairns facility could be used to rehabilitate the region's troubled youth with a decision on locations for the $2 million boot camp initiative expected soon.
Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie toured the region over the weekend inspecting potential sites, including the controversial Northern Outlook centre at Redlynch Valley.
He also announced a three-pronged approach to rehabilitating the region's juvenile criminals which would include youths living in a residential centre for one month before beginning community programs, followed by a mentoring phase. Mr Bleijie hinted the boot camp may be shared across more than one location, holding a press conference at the government-owned Northern Outlook, which does not have accommodation on site.
"There are no residential components so we can't run the whole boot camp there, but we may run some activities there," Mr Bleijie told The Cairns Post.
A spokeswoman for Mr Bleijie said yesterday no final decision on the locations had been made, but one was expected soon.
Mr Bleijie said all phases were ready to go next month, except for the residential component. No youths have been sentenced to boot camp yet despite magistrates having the power since January 31.
Mr Bleijie said it would be "unsatisfactory" if in a month there were still no children in boot camps, and he may look at restructuring the program if that is the case.
Division 6 councillor Linda Cooper said she had not been told about the possibility of Northern Outlook being used and urged the State Government to consult nearby residents, some of whom signed a petition almost three years ago saying they did not want a program for at-risk youths in their suburb.
"I would hope certainly they would get the community involved and consult with them if they are planning to use it as a boot camp."
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Plans: Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie.