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Last Updated: Tuesday, 28 August 2007, 14:39 GMT 15:39 UK
'Long-term' Tory pledge on crime
Guns removed from circulation by the Metropolitan Police
Parents and schools all needed to help tackle crime, Mr Cameron said

The Conservatives say "long-term generational change" is needed to fight crime - not a "knee-jerk" response.

Violent video games should be curbed, parents urged to be more responsible, and schools should be reformed, David Cameron said.

The Tory plan to tackle crime would see the prison early release scheme cut, and licensing laws reformed.

The government has announced plans for a gun amnesty, after 11-year-old Rhys Jones was shot dead in Liverpool.

Home Secretary Jacqui Smith said the Home Office was discussing with police where and when an amnesty would work.

'Generational change'

Mr Cameron described Labour's approach to crime as "one-dimensional", instead of focussing on "broader" issues.

He told BBC1's Breakfast programme: "This is long-term generational change.

We must fight back against the guns, the gangs and the graffiti
David Cameron

"Instead of the knee-jerk reactions we are seeing from the government, what we are producing today is a comprehensive substantial report about the things we need to change, whether it's frankly in the home, in the police station, on our streets or in the schools."

Society must not believe that rising crime was inevitable, he said later in a speech.

"We must fight back against the guns, the gangs and the graffiti. We must fight back against the drugs, the danger and the disorder.

"Above all we must fight back against the attitude that treats rising crime is inevitable, that treats social breakdown as some sort of irreversible fact of modern life and that despairs of ever making our streets safe and civilised places to be."

Music and videos

The document "How a Conservative government will tackle Britain's crime crisis" highlighted the music industry for its role in promoting negative images, especially through lyrics and videos for rap, hip-hop and R&B.

"These often explicitly popularise gangs, guns, a culture of unconstrained acquisition, and the degradation of women," it said, adding that the party would consult regularly with the industry to promote social responsibility.

Videos accessible to young people which show extreme and callous violence would also be targeted to prevent the "coarsening effect on the ethical sensibility of young people".

Mr Cameron said police were keen to reinforce parents' responsibilities when their child was in trouble.

Prison ships

While once police used to escort unruly teenagers from the streets back home, now they tend to bring the parents to the police station "to bring home the fact that your responsibilities go beyond your front door," he said.

Among other issues which he felt would help tackle crime, he mentioned the Tory tax plans to encourage marriage, as well as giving head teachers the power to expel unruly pupils, and changes to prison accommodation, such as increasing the number of prisoners in cells.

Other options included prison ships and putting disused army camps into use as jails.




SEE ALSO
Prayers for murdered boy's family
26 Aug 07 |  Merseyside
'Education key' to tackling gangs
24 Aug 07 |  Merseyside
Q and A: Gangs in the UK
24 Aug 07 |  Merseyside

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