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LCQ1: Youth Crimes in Tseung Kwan O

     Following is a reply by the Secretary for Security, Mr Ambrose S K Lee, to a question by the Hon Chan Hak-kan in the Legislative Council today (March 30):


     It has been reported that a number of juvenile crimes, including robberies, wounding and assaults, occurred in Tseung Kwan O recently, which have aroused the concerns of residents in the district. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the number of crimes, together with a breakdown, which occurred in Tseung Kwan O in the past three years in which the suspected offenders were aged 18 or below, and the number of people who were convicted eventually; of the areas identified as black spots of crime in the district, as well as the short-term measures taken by the Police to combat the crimes;

(b) given that the Tseung Kwan O Divisional Police Station is under the command of Kwun Tong Police District at present, whether it has assessed if such an arrangement has affected the deployment of police officers to Tseung Kwan O District for patrolling and law enforcement; if it has, of the outcome; whether the authorities have considered reviewing the arrangement, including setting up an independent Tseung Kwan O Police District; if they have, of the details; if not, the reasons for that; what factors the authorities will take into consideration when studying the setting up an independent police district; and

(c) whether the authorities will allocate additional resources to the voluntary agencies which at present offer extended services for young night drifters to further develop such services or introduce more teams to service young night drifters; if so, of the details; if not, the reasons for that; whether there is any collaboration programme jointly organised by various government departments and the aforesaid voluntary agencies to deal with youth problems in the district?



(a) During the three years between 2008 and 2010, the Police arrested a total of 351, 305 and 352 young persons aged under 18 respectively in Tseung Kwan O. The arrest figures do not show any significant change during the period. The numbers of arrests broken down by offences and numbers of convictions are set out at the Annex.

     Most young persons arrested in Tseung Kwan O were involved in shop theft and wounding offences. From 2008 to 2010, except for cases involving wounding and serious assault, the numbers of arrests involving other offences do not show any significant change.  In order to combat youth crime problem in the district more effectively, an additional dedicated team has been set up in the Tseung Kwan O Division since April 2010 to step up patrols of locations frequented by young persons. Furthermore, criminal cases in Tseung Kwan O involving young persons are referred to the District Crime Squad of the Kwun Tong Police District for follow-up actions as a measure to target against juvenile street gangs.

     On publicity and education, there are three Police School Liaison Officers responsible for liaising with schools in Tseung Kwan O. In 2010, the School Liaison Officers in the district organised a total of 245 activities, including talks, visits and Junior Police Call activities. The activities aimed to instill positive values and the law-abiding concept in students, and strengthen co-operation between the Police and schools. In addition, the Sai Kung District Fight Crime Committee and the Police jointly organised 15 publicity programmes in the Sai Kung and Tseung Kwan O districts in 2010 focusing on themes such as combating shop thefts to help enhance public awareness of crime prevention.  

(b) The law and order in Tseung Kwan O is currently maintained by the Tseung Kwan O Division of the Kwun Tong Police District in the Kowloon East Police Region.  The Police have been closely monitoring the crime situation and policing needs of the district.  Adequate police strength has been deployed to Tseung Kwan O to maintain law and order with reference to its community development and population growth. In the past ten years, the establishment of frontline police officers in the Tseung Kwan O Division has increased by more than double from 118 to 255 officers. In addition to the resources of the Tseung Kwan O Division, the Kowloon East Police Region has a strength of over 2,900 officers and the Police would redeploy resources internally where necessary to meet operational needs within the area. Therefore, the enforcement capability of the Police in Tseung Kwan O or other districts will not be restrained by the administrative boundaries of the police districts. The Police will continue to monitor the policing needs in Tseung Kwan O closely and take corresponding measures to maintain law and order.

     In fact, to better meet the policing needs of local communities, the Police would review their policing arrangements from time to time, including the boundaries of police regions, districts and divisions. In conducting such review, the Police would take into account such factors as projected population growth, land uses and developments, geographical characteristics and crime statistics. Regarding the proposal to upgrade the Tseung Kwan O Division to a police district, the Police are currently conducting a study on the re-organisation of the Kowloon East Police Region, which includes the distribution of manpower and facilities in the region to cater for the integrated policing needs upon the implementation of major housing and infrastructural developments in the region (such as the Kai Tak Development Plan, the housing development at Anderson Road and the Kwun Tong Town Centre Redevelopment Project, etc.).

(c) The third part of the question relates to services provided for young people in Tseung Kwan O. According to the Labour and Welfare Bureau, the Government is very concerned about the healthy development of young people. The Social Welfare Department (SWD) has been adopting the strategies of early identification and intervention, timely support, cross-sector and inter-departmental collaboration in providing a wide range of preventive and supportive services through subvented non-governmental organisations to meet the different developmental needs of young people. Such services include integrated children and youth services centres (ICYSCs), school social work service, youth outreaching social work teams (YOTs), community support service scheme and counselling centres for psychotropic substance abusers (CCPSAs).

     To strengthen support for youths at risk, particularly "young night drifters", SWD made available one additional social worker for each of the 16 District YOTs and 18 teams of Overnight Outreaching Service for Young Night Drifters (YNDs) over the territory in October 2008 to enhance timely intervention and counselling service. In December 2010, SWD allocated additional resources to provide one more social worker to each of the 16 District YOTs. At present, there are altogether 308 social workers in the District YOTs and YNDs. In the course of service enhancement, SWD has made appropriate allocation of resources by providing additional resources to districts which have greater service demand, including the YND in Tseung Kwan O.

    To meet the needs of youths at risk who are psychotropic substance abusers, SWD has also allocated additional resources to strengthen the counselling service and assistance provided by CCPSAs. The number of CCPSAs has increased from five to 11 to provide services over the territory.  Of these, the newly established Rainbow Lutheran Centre of Hong Kong Lutheran Social Services, which mainly serves Wong Tai Sin, Sai Kung and Tseung Kwan O districts, provides services that include approaching youths at risk who are psychotropic substance abusers through outreaching.

     Moreover, SWD has set up an additional ICYSC at LOHAS Park, a newly developed area in Tseung Kwan O, since February 2010. At present, there are 20 ICYSCs/Children Centres/Children and Youth Centres (CYCs) within Wong Tai Sin and Sai Kung Districts.  Of these, seven ICYSCs and one CYC provide services to children and young persons in Tseung Kwan O.

     At the district level, the Wong Tai Sin and Sai Kung District Social Welfare Office (DSWO) of SWD has been working actively with the concerned District Councils, other government departments and community stakeholders to pool together community resources and efforts for the provision of appropriate services to those in need. Regarding support for "young night drifters" or youths at risk, the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) and DSWO have, taking into account the need of the "young night drifters" in individual districts, opened up LCSD's sports venue facilities at night since 2002 for overnight outreaching service teams to organise activities for young people.

     Through the existing platform of the Local Committee on Services for Young People, DSWOs continue to co-ordinate the work of district youth services units by motivating them to make better use of district resources and, in conjunction with resident associations, focus on organising different forms of activities for young people who are most vulnerable and those at risk to assist them to stay away from juvenile gangs and crimes.

     SWD will continue to closely monitor the needs of youths at risk, in particular "young night drifters", and timely review the demand for related services in a timely manner. Taking into account the characteristics and service needs of their respective districts, DSWOs will collaborate with relevant youth services units and stakeholders to provide young people with diversified and appropriate services to help them grow up in a healthy manner.

Ends/Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Issued at HKT 15:19


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