Madam Speaker, it is with great honour that I rise today to present this petition asking the government to reform the Young Offenders Act.
This petition which calls for tougher laws for today's youth who commit violent crimes was started in my riding a couple of months ago by Jennifer Schuller and Tammy Carvalho, two grade 10 students at Mount Boucherie senior secondary school in Kelowna, B.C.
Jennifer and Tammy had become so fed up with the way the justice system dealt with their own age group that they took it upon themselves to start a petition to ask their elected representatives to fix the problem.
As their MP I am more than proud to convey their feelings to this House and to the Minister of Justice. Jennifer and Tammy feel as I do, that by making the Young Offenders Act tougher on youths who commit violent crime it will instil a feeling of greater responsibility for one's own actions in our young people.
Jennifer, Tammy and I believe that reforming the act is only part of the solution. We as communities, we in our homes and in our families and in our schools must work together to create an environment in which our young people do not feel the need to act out in a violent manner. We have the responsibility to teach our young people that they have to be prepared to accept the
consequences of their actions. We cannot expect government to solve this problem alone.
Over 4,600 people from my constituency felt that Tammy and Jennifer-