03:47 pm, Wednesday 7 August, 2013
Brisbane Lord Mayor Graham Quirk has shown his support for the Transport Workers Union (TWU) who has called for mandated sentences to apply to people that attack bus and taxi drivers.
The Lord Mayor pledged his support during the council meeting yesterday that was held after 50 members of the TWU marched to the Queensland Parliament to ask for the change in a petition.
He said that, “There is no excuse why people going about their proper jobs in this city particularly in our transport network should face assault. The TWU want mandated sentences for people who assault bus and taxi drivers, I could not agree more fully with them.”
However Scott Emerson, the Transport Minister, said that he would not endorse mandatory sentencing for people who assault bus and taxi drivers and that the best way to respond to assault on all Queenslanders was to strengthen the laws.
He said that the bus safety committee has used a proactive approach to address bus safety issues and that the latest figures show that assaults have been reduced by 42% when compared to the same time last year.
Mr Emerson said that regular safety blitzes and cracking down on poorly behaved school students have helped to reduce this figure in the last 12 months.
He said that is still too many and this is why he has made a commitment to double the number of senior network officers in the next 12 months.