VANDALISM: Youth must feel valued

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It is unacceptable that a small minority in Alnwick have been allowed to commit such crime in and around town, (Northumberland Gazette, June 2).

No ‘difficult’ upbringing should be held up as a reason for this wanton vandalism and destruction, it’s a choice.

There are plenty of people in Alnwick who choose not to damage property, or attack strangers in the street, or set fire to bins.

The culprits need to be dealt with harshly. No cautions, no slap on the wrist.

For far too long, I believe our ‘tolerance’ has led to criminal activity being at best normalised, at worst ignored.

The police need to be out on foot, talking and engaging with our young people.

At the same time, provision for youth development and inclusion should be increased. For years now, the youth budget all over this land has been cut to the bone. No wonder some young people feel lost and worthless.

While our young people should know that nobody owes them a living, they need to feel as if they are valued members of society. They need to be encouraged to reach their full potential.

There will always be a small minority who sadly find comfort in criminal activity, but if funds, activities, education and encouragement is provided to help young people find the right path in life, hopefully they, too, will discover that the world is not their enemy and their past doesn’t have to dictate their future.

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