Sunday, 6 April 2008

Negligent parents face 3 years jail

Queensland parents who abandon their children to go gambling, drinking or shopping, face up to three years in jail under a new law set to go before Parliament.

The controversial law, which will apply to the parents of children under 12 years of age, is expected to be up for debate later this month.

The bill has been drafted in response to reports of children being abandoned in car parks and hotel rooms, or left at home and it will allow police to charge parents who have left their children unattended for an unreasonable amount of time.

Under the current law, police can only issue a warning to parents who abandon their children and cannot charge them unless the child has been hurt.

"I'm taking to Cabinet on Monday, 14 [April]... [about] proposals for a new law to clamp down on irresponsible parents who abandon their children for limited periods, and I'm proposing that a maximum penalty of three years should apply," Attorney General Kerry Shine said.

As every case of neglect is different, police will be given discretion to judge what is unreasonable.


Jail parents of truants, says Iemma
EDUCATION and welfare experts have ridiculed Morris Iemma's plan to send parents to jail if their children repeatedly miss school, saying the policy is "heavy-handed" and will only hurt the most disadvantaged students.

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