14 Mar 2012

'Think twice' before sending teens to Australia

8:24 am on 14 March 2012

A Melbourne youth worker is appealing to the families of New Zealand Pacific Island youths to avoid sending them there unless they have a confirmed job or education lined up.

Les Twentyman says there is high youth unemployment and youth gang violence in west Melbourne has escalated to crisis point.

He says videos posted online are showing wild brawls and vicious attacks among youth gangs, including Polynesian youths

Mr Twentyman told Radio New Zealand's Morning Report programme that poor New Zealand families should think twice about sending their troubled teens there in the hope of a better life.

"Unless it's something locked in solid, like maybe an extended education or they're going to be involved in a guaranteed job, they're maybe just transporting from one problem spot to another."

Mr Twentyman says there's no work available, and just the other night there were three or four nasty incidents .