There has been a sceptical response to plans for a West Australian version of a British scheme that has seen a drop
in juvenile crime by 50 per cent among those involved.
Premier Geoff Gallop says he is committed to introducing 'parental responsibility orders', which in the UK allow courts to prosecute
parents of wayward children.
The laws compel parents of young offenders to attend parenting classes or face stiff penalties.
But many of the 55 submissions to the Government's discussion paper on the plan express doubts about how it would work in WA.
Former president of the Children's Court Kate O'Brien says the orders would pose significant problems for Aboriginal families, particularly
in regional areas.
She says in many cases, young Aboriginal children live with relatives rather than biological parents and that family support may
diminish if carers are faced with orders carrying a criminal sanction for non-compliance.
Judge O'Brien says the orders would place another burden on already over-committed families, undermining parental authority.
She says it would be better to review and increase resourcing to existing programs.
Others questioning the effectiveness of such a scheme are Police Commissioner Barry Matthews, the Aboriginal Legal Service and the
Youth Affairs Council.
The submissions are being reviewed and will be considered as the Government prepares its final implementation plan, which is expected
to be released mid-year.