Have your say...

2nd February 2001 at 00:00
Carole Clayson, headteacher of Wellesley first school, Norwich

"I think curfews are a good idea provided parents realise children are their responsibility. It's no good if the children have to stay in, but the parents go out.

"Prevention is better than cure though. Young people need to be stimulated. We need properly-funded activities for teenagers.

"Youth clubs have disappeared. They always relied on volunteers and were not funded properly. Now people aren't prepared to put the time in. If you go abroad to France or Germany, every town has sports facilities, sports centres, tennis courts, swimming pools, the lot. We haven't got that."

Paul Cavadino, director of policy at Nacro, the crime reduction charity.

"Curfews are not theanswer to youth crime. They could worsen already fraught relations between young people and the police and needlessly penalise the majority of law-abiding children.

"To prevent youth crime we need more support services for families under stress; resources for schools to work with children with behaviour problems; more youth outreach work and facilities in poorer areas,We also need specialist training for disaffected young people, more drug-prevention programmes and determined efforts to tackle youth homelessness.

"When young people offend, we should use effective approaches such as bail support, reparation and intensive supervision.

"These approaches will be far more effective than headline-hitting gimmicks like area curfews."

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