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 White paper on crime 2003 Part 5/Chap.7/Sec.3 

Section 3 Closing -Aiming for Pleasant Society Free From Heinous Offenses-

  We have discussed "characteristics of heinous offenses with changing nature and background factors thereof' and "countermeasures and challenges" in details so far. As the increase in heinous offenses has resulted from a complex combination of various factors, we cannot find the only way to solve this problem, which has an immediate effect as special medicine. Under the current circumstances where people are feeling "insecure" instead of "safe" about public peace, appropriate measures against the rapid deterioration of crime situation have never been desired so strong as they are today. We should recognize that safe and secure life is not naturally given to but should be acquired with efforts by citizens, and reasonable costs are required for taking public security measures. Based on this recognition and the results of analysis and examination made in this special article, in order to appropriately respond to the current crime situation, it is more important than anything to enhance criminal justice. To this end, it is necessary at first to improve human and material resources of the criminal justice authorities that are engaged in the process of law enforcement, starting from crime prevention activities including the reinforcement of the immigration control system, through the clearance, prosecution, and trial of offenders, to correction and rehabilitation of offenders. At the same time, according to the principle of criminal justice that all offenses must be cleared and offenders must be properly punished and subject to effective treatment, it is also necessary to maintain the current quality of the criminal justice system starting from the clearance of offenses to the treatment of offenders, and keep endeavoring to improve the credibility and authority thereof.
  Another important issue is child discipline and education. Prevention of juvenile offenses is one of priority issues of national politics, and it will be achieved by improving child discipline and education. The current tendency of attaching too much importance to learning results while disregarding humanity would generate not only outcasts from school but also juveniles with desolated mind. This tendency may be combined with the hedonistic climate, diffusion of IT based game machines, and weakening cordiality between children, which may be generating juveniles lacking a sense of belonging to society and wandering around aimlessly. In this regard, we should give consideration to changes in the attitudes of juvenile robbery offenders mentioned above and make it a basic goal for the prevention of juvenile offenses to encourage juvenile offenders to recognize pains suffered by others and cultivate compassion and moral awareness in their minds. Child abuse and domestic violence, which have negative impacts on juveniles' minds and bodies and cause them to become delinquent, are also important issues, and therefore it is also necessary to take preventive measures as appropriate. We should bear in mind that sound development of juveniles who will lead the future of Japan is the starting point for all crime prevention measures.
  The third issue is the demand for the improvement of social environment. From the perspective of strengthening crime prevention activities, it is the most important to thoroughly regulate and clear larceny offenses, which are the major cause of the deterioration of public security, and to achieve this, cooperation from communities and residents is indispensable. At the same time, the recovery of community ties and the improvement of social environment are closely related to other issues such as the recovery of family ties and necessary education of juveniles and the prevention of school violence and necessary guidance and educational programs for students.
  When aiming at realizing safe and secure society, we face not a few problems that are difficult to solve only through criminal justice. For this reason, it is absolutely necessary that the criminal justice authorities, which play a central role, as well as other ministries concerned and all organizations and individuals, including families, schools, workplaces, communities, and volunteer groups, will cooperate with one another beyond boundaries and make consistent efforts to design and carry out radical measures to prevent heinous offenses while offering opinions from various perspectives.