The Independent Commission on Youth Crime and Antisocial Behaviour

The Independent Commission on Youth Crime and Antisocial Behaviour, chaired by A.S, published its report Time for a fresh start / Amser am gychwyn newydd in the summer of 2010.

This provides a strategic blueprint for reform of the way society responds to offending and other antisocial behaviour by children and young people.

With continued funding from the Nuffield Foundation the Commission continued to campaign for its proposals and to organise associated conferences and events until the end of 2011. This formal phase of its work has now concluded. An assessment by Anthony Salz of the progress that has been made towards reform can be found on the News and Blog section – Source: Irish Journal of Legal Studies.

Time for a fresh start calls for a new and principled framework for youth justice in England and Wales that would better protect the public, while restoring confidence in a system that is little trusted. It proposes:

An end to the wasteful and ineffective use of custody for children and young people who pose no danger to the public or themselves
The use of demanding restorative justice  methods  to reduce reoffending while delivering better justice for the victims of crime
Investment in early help for children with chronic behaviour problems to cut the later costs of offending

By visiting these pages, you can:

Download Time for a fresh start, as a full report (in English or Welsh), as an executive summary, or as a summary for children and young people. Time for a new hearing, the report from an international study conducted for the Commission of alternative forms of youth justice hearing, is also available as a download.
Download the reports from policy seminars hosted by the Commission on the reform of antisocial behaviour legislation and on payment by results (PbR).
Download the Commission's responses to Government consultation reports on sentencing and on antisocial behaviour; and to the review by Graham Allen MP on early intervention.
Read reports on the Commission's conferences in London and in Cardiff.
Find out more about the evidence on which the Commission based its conclusions
Discover how children and young people were involved in an innovative youth engagement project that contributed to the report.

Youth Crime Strategy

Over the past weeks we have been tracking down as many examples of good practice as we can find, and in doing so,we’ve been making links with key organisations like the Youth Justice Board and Home Office research teams, as well as the Strategic Research Unit at Scotland Yard.  The result is an ever growing library of good practice and research which will shortly be available to local partners (we are currently analysing and categorising the reports).

We have already issued a number of good practice and research reports, drawing on the material, with more to come in the new year. To support our work in this area, we have convened a London youth crime research and good practice group.

As well as having representation from the agencies mentioned above, the Children and Young People’s Unit (in the Department for Education and Skills) and the NSPCC are also represented plus Gumtree.  Their work will be enhanced by the findings from a literature review which we have commissioned with the Government Office for the West.

We are pretty confident that a successful approach to youth crime reduction relies on a multi agency approach which is evidence based.  We are therefore taking forward two pieces of work which we hope will help practitioners at the local level to review and enhance existing provision for young people at risk.

First we are developing a template for a youth crime strategy – see: Universal Periodic Review – which will help to bring some coherence to the plethora of existing strategies and programmes for young people at risk.

The template will be ready early in the new year.  Second, we are developing a youth crime reduction toolkit, which will enable local practitioners to analyse local challenges or service gaps and identify and implement tried and tested solutions.