17 Sep 2008

Changes proposed for treatment of sex offenders

3:11 pm on 17 September 2008

A parliamentary select committee has recommended changes to the way youth sex offenders are dealt with.

It says though the sector is not in crisis mode, it is concerned that a number of issues require urgent attention.

The Social Services committee inquiry began in 2007 after a teenage sex offender was caught several times on a Napier property where a young child lives.

The committee has made 14 recommendations to the Government, following its inquiry into the care and rehabilitation of teenage sex offenders.

In its report it says the Government needs to improve access for young offenders to treatment and ensure that they are more thoroughly assessed.

The committee suggests extra funding for early intervention services and recommends increasing the monitoring of caregivers and the youths in their care.

Chair of the committee Labour MP Russell Fairbrother says he is confident the Government will seriously consider the recommendations.