Toughest laws in the nation to target child killers and multiple murderers

21 June 2021

The Palaszczuk Government will introduce the toughest parole laws in the nation so that a person convicted of killing a child and serving a life sentence or a person convicted of multiple murders and serving a life sentence can be blocked from obtaining parole, keeping them behind bars for longer, and shielding the families of victims from further trauma.

Declarations to prevent parole applications

Under these proposed laws, the President of the Parole Board Queensland will be able to make a declaration that a person who is: 

  1. convicted of killing a child and serving a life sentence or convicted of multiple murders and serving a life sentence, and
  2. eligible for parole, will be blocked from obtaining parole for a period of up to ten years.

Further, there is no limit on the number of declarations that can be issued to these prisoners, which means that a further declaration could be issued for up to ten years at the expiry of a previous declaration, and so on for decades.

Also, the President of the PBQ will be able to make this declaration irrespective of whether the prisoner has  already made an application for parole.

Understandably, whenever a prisoner applies for parole, this can re-traumatise the families, friends and the  community.

These new laws are aimed at shielding those who have lost loved ones from unnecessary pain and suffering.

To be clear, the government is introducing these changes because it is committed to ensuring the safety of every member of the community and to protecting the families, friends and the broader community from unnecessary trauma.

Presumption against the granting of parole

In addition, even if a declaration is not made by the President of the PBQ, a new presumption against parole will also be introduced for the prisoners who fall into this cohort.

This means these prisoners who are the worst of the worst, will have to prove that they do not pose a threat to the community before they are even considered eligible for parole.

Toughest laws in the nation

Minister for Police and Corrective Services, Mark Ryan, said these proposed laws would set a new benchmark for the nation.

“No other jurisdiction in Australia has the power to declare no parole consideration for a period of up to ten years, and with the potential of further periods of up to ten years.

“And no other jurisdiction targets both child killers serving a life sentence and multiple murderers serving a life sentence in this way.

“These proposed laws will be the strongest in the nation to support community safety.

“And I can’t emphasise enough the extent to which these proposed laws are aimed at reducing the level of trauma experienced by the families of the victims of violent crimes.

“The tough new laws that we are proposing are about protecting the victim’s families and protecting the community.”