spiralling into a cycle of crime are available.
Child curfew schemes for children under ten will be available
throughout England and Wales. The scheme will allow local
late at night.
The new measures to tackle youth crime will be piloted in nine
areas of the country.
Home secretary Jack Straw said:
'In the past, young offenders have been left to wreck their own lives
and cause havoc in communities. These new measures will radically
overhaul the system that allows this to happen.
'We have introduced a new approach to dealing with youth crime. One
that will make sure that young offenders face up to what they have
'These measures will be piloted throughout the country to build on
existing local work and prepare the way for national implementation.
'In future all those working within the youth justice system will
have a common principal aim - to prevent offending by children and
The measures which will be piloted are:
- final warning scheme - repeat cautioning will be abolished and
replaced with a statutory final warning scheme;
- parenting orders - to help and support parents to control the
behaviour of their children. It will require parents to attend
counselling and guidance sessions;
- child safety orders - to protect children under ten who are at risk
of becoming involved in crime. It could require a child to be at
home at certain times or to stay away from certain people or places;
- reparation orders - to make young offenders face up to their crimes
and the consequences of their actions. It could involve writing a
letter of apology, apologising in person, cleaning graffiti or
repairing criminal damage;
- action plan orders - a short intensive programme of community-
based intervention combining punishment, rehabilitation and
- youth offending teams - involving social workers, police and
probation officers, and education and health staff. They will
deliver community-based intervention programmes to make youngsters
face up to their crimes and change their attitudes.
Some of these measures will be piloted by the London Boroughs of
Hammersmith & Fulham, Kensington & Chelsea and City of Westminster
(joint); Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Southampton and Portsmouth
(joint); Wolverhampton; and Sheffield.
The child safety and parenting orders and youth offending teams are
to be piloted by the London Borough of Lewisham; Luton and
Bedfordshire (joint); St Helens; Sunderland; and Devon.
The rebuttable presumption that a child is doli incapax (incapable of
telling the difference between naughtiness and serious wrong) has
also been abolished. This means that all children and
young people aged between 10 and 17 will be treated similarly.
. The youth justice measures have been introduced by the Crime and
Disorder Act 1998.
. The youth justice pilots will run for 18 months.
. Local child curfews will be established by local authorities in
consultation with the police and local communities. The proposed
scheme would then by submitted to the home office for confirmation.
YOUTH JUSTICE BOARD ESTABLISHED
The Youth Justice Board, which has been established, will
focus on preventing offending by children and young people.
main body of its work will focus on early intervention with young
offenders, speeding up youth justice and better programmes for
The board will concentrate on helping to put in place the
new infrastructure for youth justice by April 2000. This includes
- local youth offending teams
- final warning schemes
- the new reparation and action plan orders and the
- programmes to underpin them
Chairman of the board, Norman Warner said:
'In pursuing reform of the youth justice system, the board will use
external expertise, development funding and the experience of the
pilot schemes which are starting today.
'Board members will be out and about in local areas listening,
learning and encouraging change. We will adopt a consultative
approach in formulating advice to government.
'We want to see change, innovative ideas, local partnership and
measurement of outcomes. Developing an effective communications
strategy will be high on our agenda.'
The early work of the board is likely to cover:
- stimulating more and better intervention programmes in areas like
parenting, reparation and mentoring
- developing a national training and development programme for youth
offending team managers
- encouraging more bail supervision and support schemes to underpin
the new Statutory duty on local authorities
- speeding up youth justice, especially reducing the time from arrest
to sentence for persistent young offenders
- identifying information needs and promoting better information
systems at local level
- advising the government on the regimes, standards and placement
arrangements needed in secure juvenile facilities to implement the
new Detention and Training Order, together with a new contracting
system for places for remanded and sentenced offenders