Shadow Justice Minister Dan Jarvis has said that the Government’s proposed “secure college model” for young offenders is worryingly untried and untested. Young offenders have complex needs, and present challenges that demands “smart, evidence-based policies” that will deliver results, as well as value for public money. But the Government is bringing a policy before Parliament in the Criminal Justice and Courts Bill that meets none of those tests.
Thanks to the hard work of the Youth Justice Board and Youth Offending Teams, both introduced by the last Labour Government, youth crime has fallen by nearly 40% since the late 1990s. I worked briefly as a youth offending team officer from 2007 – 2009, and Labour’s emphasis on preventative and rehabilitation work, used detailed risk and needs assessment, and support for young people was designed, planned and delivered by collaborative multi-agency professional teams (under the Every Child Matters legislative banner), which worked very well…
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