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COUNCILS FAIL TO USE CHILD CURFEW LEGISLATION

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The Liberal Democrats and Conservatives have dismissed child curfews as a 'gimmick' after it was revealed that not ...
The Liberal Democrats and Conservatives have dismissed child curfews as a 'gimmick' after it was revealed that not one council had applied to impose one.

The Daily Telegraph (p13) reports that giving local authorities the power to impose local curfews on under-10s was one of the flagship measures in the government's Crime and Disorder Act.

But the paper says council officers are sceptical about the legislation, which came into force at the end of September, and some MPs believe the failure of local authorities to take advantage of the measure shows the plans are badly flawed.

James Clappison, a Conservative home affairs spokesman, said: 'This was meant to be one of the key measures in the Crime and Disorder Act, but it has been grossly over-presented by the Labour party.'

The fact that the measure had not been taken up by any councils was revealed by Paul Boateng, a home office minister, in a written parliamentary answer to Alan Beith, the Lib Dem home affairs spokesman.

Mr Beith said: 'The general lack of interest suggests that curfews were a bit of a gimmick.' One local authority official is quoted as saying: 'There are negative feelings all round about this.'

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