Joint strategy to reduce the number of young people who offend

The Welsh Government and Youth Justice Board are launching a joint plan to prevent young people offending and re-offending.

The Youth Justice Strategy, published by the Minister for Local Government and Government Business Lesley Griffiths AM today (10th July), meets a commitment in the Welsh Government’s Programme for Government.

Minister for Local Government and Government Business, Lesley Griffiths AM, said:

“First and foremost, our approach to youth justice is to treat those involved, or at risk of becoming involved, in offending behaviour as children and young people first and offenders second.

“We made a promise to consider what more needed to be done to strengthen policies in education, housing, substance misuse, health and social services.

“This promise covered a pledge to ensure greater accountability of all partners in relation to children and young people in the youth justice system. The strategy seeks to improve services to better meet the needs of children and young people who are at risk of entering, or who are already in, the youth justice system.

“Young people involved in persistent offending and risky behaviours require support to prevent them from further offending and it is for this reason we are working to ensure better support for these young people.”

Lord McNally, Chair of the YJB, said:

“This strategy supports our joint commitment to provide a youth justice system in Wales that prevents crime and protects communities.

“By promoting ways to reduce re-offending, and improving the outcomes for an often challenging group of young people, this strategy helps us continue to make impressive reductions in the number of first-time entrants and under-18’s in custody.”

The strategy provides the Youth Justice Board, the Welsh Government and partners delivering youth justice services with clear guidance on how they can assist the prevention of offending and re-offending by children and young people.