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Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party Debate: Tackling Violent Crime

Wednesday 11 May 2022 4:09 PM

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That the Parliament notes with concern that the number of police-recorded violent crimes is at its highest level in a decade; further notes that Scottish Government decisions have contributed to this rise by underfunding the police, which has led to full-time police officer numbers being at their lowest level since 2008; recognises that the Scottish Government’s justice strategy is failing victims of crime, as is evident through the 931,991 hours of community sentences that have been written off or not yet carried out; notes that organised crime and domestic abuse contribute to a deteriorating picture of crimes of violence in Scotland, and urges the Scottish Government to take action to address this; recognises that the Scottish Government’s justice strategy is failing to keep the public safe by diverting dangerous criminals away from prison, instead allowing them to carry out inadequate non-custodial alternatives; believes that proposals such as those outlined in the Scottish Government’s consultation on bail and release from custody arrangements, which include proposals to automatically release offenders after serving just a third of their prison sentence, do not address the shift in balance in the justice system away from victims, and further distil a lack of confidence in sentencing, and calls, therefore, on the Scottish Government to change strategy by acknowledging that punishment remains an important part of the criminal justice system, and to support proposals contained in the proposed Victims, Criminal Justice and Fatal Accident Inquiries (Scotland) Bill, such as the introduction of Michelle's Law and Suzanne's Law, to improve the landscape of support for the victims of crime, which it believes is currently letting down too many in society.

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