Agenda item

Youth Justice Strategic Plan 2020 - 2023


The Commission considered a report of the Director of Children and Family Services which sought its views on the revised draft Youth Justice Strategic Plan for 2020 – 2023.  A copy of the report marked ‘Agenda Item 10’, is filed with these notes.


Arising from discussion, the following points arose:


(i)              A key area of concern related to the exploitation of children, particularly vulnerable children, but all partners were focused on addressing this.  It was noted as a key risk area and so would be heavily monitored under the revised Plan.  It was acknowledged that current circumstances meant it was difficult to operate in the usual way as schools which were currently closed, played a key roll in identifying and reporting such issues. 

(ii)             It would be important for the Service to look at the impact of isolation on some families and how this had affected children and young people who might not be being supported in the usual way.

(iii)           The potential release of young offenders because of the coronavirus outbreak would be unlikely to have a significant impact in Leicestershire.  The National Probation Service and the Youth Justice Board would be responsible for those released, though the County Council would have a role to play in arranging accommodation.  It was expected that only 2 young offenders would be released, and they were coming to the end of their custodial sentence.

(iv)           There was some concern that the Plan was difficult to follow for someone who had little knowledge of the Youth Offending Services (YOS).  It was suggested that a glossary of terms and an overall summary be included for the future.

(v)            The Youth Offending Service Management Board was chaired by the Chief Executive of the County Council and the Board involved representatives from the Council’s Youth Offending Service, the Police, Probation Service and Health.  It had general oversight of all YOS work including those not in education, employment and training (NEET). The Board received a quarterly report and unlike some areas, had good knowledge of where these young people were.  Whilst it was not possible for the Service to force young people to engage, knowledge of their location and links with the family through the Early Help and Wellbeing Services meant they could be monitored. 

(vi)           It was acknowledged that some young people did not engage due to bad experiences in school and the lack of a support network that would encourage them to take part in EET.  Members noted that the Council had introduced additional resources including a psychologist and forensic psychologist that would support this work and help address any such issues.  It was noted that it was not possible for one agency to provide the solution so partnership work in this area was key.

(vii)         Members welcomed the excellent work continuing to take place with families and the whole family approach adopted by the Council.  Members also supported the work not only to provide support to those subject to youth referral orders which was a statutory requirement, but also first-time entrants.  It was agreed that such preventative action was necessary and right, and the likely reason the Council’s figures were lower than the national average.

(viii)        In response to a question, Members were advised that the YOS was a County Service and that the City Council YOS operated separately.

(ix)           A request was made that the plan attached at page 105 of the draft Youth Justice Plan be amended to include reference to Oadby and Wigston.



(a)  That the comments now made be referred to the Cabinet at its meeting on 23rd June;

(b)  That Officers be requested to amend page 105 of the Plan to include reference to Oadby and Wigston and to consider the comments made regarding the inclusion of a glossary and summary when it was next reviewed.

Supporting documents: