Pubdate: Tue, 03 Aug 1999
Source: Canberra Times (Australia)
Author: W. M. Bush


LAST Friday your paper reported record levels of burglaries and 18 armed
robberies since the beginning of June - "police linked many of the incidents
with possible drug use" ("AFP calls for help in wave of crime", 30 July,
p.5). The same morning a firm rang to offer us a free security survey of our
house. On Saturday you quoted Neighbourhood Watch chairman Len Gibson as
saying that rates of burglaries, vandalism and petty crime had doubled in
less than a year in his own area of Belconnen ("Calls to revive suburban
crime watch", 31 July, p.3). Focus groups of NRMA policy holders have placed
at the top of their concerns property crime committed by those feeding their
addiction (Sun Herald, 9 May, p.11). The Prime Minister has told us drugs
account for up to 80 per cent of property offences.

Swiss police records reveal a reduction close to 70 per cent in crime by
those on the heroin-prescription program of that country, and that this
reduction can be expected in just six months.

Why do we put up with rising crime when we know how to reduce it by so much
so quickly?

W. M. BUSH Turner

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