20 Jul 2011

Bennett says too soon to judge Fresh Start programme

9:05 pm on 20 July 2011

Social Development Minister Paula Bennett says it's too soon to tell if the Government's youth justice programme is working.

A progress report has been issued on the eight-month old Fresh Start scheme, which uses community-based programmes, including military-type camps, to tackle youth offending.

It shows of the 17 young people who took part in two pilot military camps, four went on to prison and 60% re-offended, but less seriously.

Ms Bennett says the pilot camps showed there was a need for more support for the participants once they were back in the community.

She says there have been considerable changes and while she expects better results in the future, the participants are at the hard end of offending and there will never be 100% success.