Youth offending service
Trafford Youth Offending Service (YOS) is one of the top performing Youth Offending Services in England and Wales. The most recent inspection can be found following this link
The Youth Offending Service in Trafford has an overarching aim to reduce offending and re-offending of young people.
The Youth Offending Service is a multiagency model made up of representatives from the social services, health, education, substance abuse, police, and probation.
The Multiagency model helps identify the individual needs of each young offender by assessing them with a national assessment. This helps to identify specific problems that make the young person offend as well as measuring the risk they pose to others. YOS to identify suitable programmes to address the needs of the young person with the intention of rehabilitation and preventing further offending.
What are the Prevention/ Out of Court Team?
The focus of the Youth Offending Service Prevention team is to complete specific work to prevent young people aged 8-17yrs from entering the Criminal Justice system. This work involves one to one issue based sessions, Group work and Family support. If the Young person meets the criteria we will complete a holistic assessment using ASSET. This will identify the level of ‘risk’ they pose in relation to offending, which therefore depicts the intensity of intervention. The young person will be given a programme where they will be seen outside of school hours. Through The out of Court disposal aspect we receive notifications from Police of when a young person has received restorative justice for an offence; this enables us to offer intervention when appropriate. We receive referrals for assessments from the Police where an offence has occurred. Through the assessment and police liaison a decision is made as to whether the YP receives a Community Resolution, Caution or Conditional Caution. The team will then supervise the young person’s intervention, working with them through issue based work, reparation and referrals to appropriate agencies.
Many of our referrals come directly through from the police when a young person has committed a low level crime. This referral form is for those young people who have not yet been identified to the Prevention team through an ABC or a Police charge. If you’re not sure, please call us to check. In order to meet our new criteria, those young people who are not already known to the ASB team or the Police must have displayed an incident that is deemed as ‘crime like’. To clarify, a ‘crime like’ incident is an incident that has arisen that could potentially mean contacting the police e.g. stealing, fighting, violent and aggressive outbursts, being a persistent bully. We will then use this incident as the basis of our intervention, in order reduce the risk of this incident reoccurring. If you want to refer a young person please indicate below what incident has occurred for you to deem this young person at risk.
What if there is already a CAF? Please speak to the Prevention team as work can be completed as part of the CAF action plan.
What are the criteria?
- Young person must be aged 8yrs to 17 years
- Live in Trafford
- One referral form to be completed. Referring agency to continue to work with young person throughout Prevention intervention working towards the team around child ethos.
- At risk of engaging in further crime and anti-social behaviour
- Consent must be gained from both young person and parent to engage in the service.
- Young person must be at risk of crime through one of the three following remits:
- Police Identification – When a young person is highlighted to the police through a community Resolution a notification will be sent to the YOS and when appropriate the young person and family will be offered Prevention intervention. This is on a voluntary basis. Caution and Conditional Caution - The Police will make a referral for assessment to YOS, who will arrange an appointment for the Young person and their careers to attend an assessment meeting. This assessment along with a Police decision will determine the Outcome. If the young person does not engage they may be summons to court.
- Anti- Social behavior – We work closely with the ASB team, YOS supervise young people who are on antisocial behaviour civil supervision orders
- Agency Identification – i.e. the agency has concerns in relation to the above explained ‘crime like’ incident reoccurring and risk increasing.
- Young person has already been known to the Youth Offending Service in the past or present (has surpassed pre-court stage and up).
- Young person already engaging with Multi Systemic Therapy.
- If the YP is not a Trafford resident.
Implementation of court orders
The Youth Offending Service is responsible for the supervision and implementation of orders imposed by the youth court on young people who have been convicted of a criminal offence.
The court can also impose a Parenting Order on the parents of young offenders and this is also supervised by the Youth Offending Service. The youth court can impose the following orders on a young offender:
- Referral Order
- Reparation Order
- Youth Rehabilitation Order
- Detention and Training Order
Referral Orders came in to force on the 1 April 2002. Most young offenders appearing in court for the first time and pleading guilty are sentenced to a Referral Order for between three months and one year. The only exceptions are very minor cases or if the court passes a custodial sentence or hospital order. If a young person receives a Referral Order they will be required to attend a Youth Offender Panel.
Panels are made up of at least two trained volunteers from the community and a member of the Youth Offending Service.
During the panel meeting the offender draws up a "contract" with the panel and if appropriate, the victim. The contract is based on the principles of Restorative Justice and will usually consist of an element of each
- Responsibility - The young person is encouraged to take responsibility for what they have done
- Reparation - Repairing the harm caused by the young person’s actions. Reparation is either direct to the victim or to the community as a whole
- Reintegration - The panel looks at ways to address the young person’s offending behaviour
After the Panel the young person is supervised by a member of the Youth Offending Service and will attend further review panel meetings during the term of their order to monitor progress and make amendments where necessary.
If the young person is younger than 16 years old, their parents or carers are required to attend with them. Victims are also invited to attend and take part. If the young offender fails to agree a contract or fails to abide by it during the term of the order, the case is referred back to the court for re-sentencing.
The Youth Rehabilitation Order (YRO) is a community sentence for young offenders that combine a number of requirements laid down by the court under an umbrella of a YRO.
The following requirements can be attached to a YRO:
- Activity requirement
- Curfew requirement
- Exclusion requirement
- Local Authority residence requirement
- Education requirement
- Mental health treatment requirement
- Unpaid work requirement (16/17 years)
- Drug testing requirement
- Intoxicating substance treatment requirement
- Supervision requirement
- Electronic monitoring requirement
- Prohibited activity requirement
- Drug treatment requirement
- Residence requirement
- Programme requirement
- Attendance center requirement
- Intensive supervision and surveillance
- Intensive fostering
Restorative justice puts the victim of an offence at the heart of the youth justice system, where appropriate restorative justice can play an important role in reducing reoffending. Also by helping victims, it increases public confidence in the youth justice system by:
- Holding young people to account so that they will take part in repairing the harm they have caused and will learn from the experience
- Giving victims a voice and reducing the fear of crime and anti-social behaviour
- Engaging members of the local community
- Reinforcing parental responsibility
Restorative justice is not a soft option; many offenders find it extremely difficult to face the consequences of their crimes. Research shows that most victims who participate in some form of restorative justice find it helpful and are satisfied with the outcome.
Once a young person has been sentenced at court, a 'victim coordinator' will make contact with the victim to explain the sentence the young person has received and to offer support to the victim that may go some way toward repairing the harm that has resulted from the offence.
Victims are offered a range of opportunities to take part in the restorative justice process, these can include:
- Face to face meetings with young people who committed an offence against them at either the referral panel meeting or at a later date
- Mediation between the victim and offender either face to face or through the victim coordinator
- The victim can agree to receive a letter of apology or explanation
- The offender can form a specific task or unpaid work directly for the victim
If the victim does not want to be part of any restorative justice processes or there is no clear victim. The young person will be given a number of hours of unpaid work (reparation) to make amends for their offence to complete in the community.
The Youth Offending Service (YOS) welcome suggestions for reparation tasks from the community that meet the following minimum criteria:
- It will benefit the local community
- It will not take paid work away from others
- No one will make a profit from the work
- It will be worthwhile and constructive
- Could you listen to and motivate a young person in Trafford to make positive changes?
- Do you have at least 4 hours a week to spare?
Why we need volunteers
At Trafford Youth Offending Service and CAMHS we welcome volunteers to support us to deliver a full range of services. Our volunteers work across all teams within the service supporting both young people and parents. We are currently looking for highly committed people to act as Community Panel members, mentors and role models for young people over a 12 month period.
You must be prepared to attend a full training programme which consists of 2 full day’s foundation training and possibly a further 5 evenings depending on the role you wish to undertake.
If you would like further information or an informal chat about the volunteering opportunities available, please contact Justine Lea-Grime on 0161 911 8201.
As a young offender, an alternative way to address your behaviour is to hold a restorative justice meeting with the victim and the people who have been involved. A youth offending officer will carry out the meeting and ask you a series of questions about what happened.
During this meeting, you will find out how your behaviour has affected others and you have the chance to put things right.
To make restorative justice work, both you and the other people involved must genuinely want to take part and put things right.
How does it work?
A council officer who has been specially trained will meet with you and your teenager and ask you both a series of questions. You can hear your son's/daughter's points of view in a calm, controlled manner, which will help you, understand where the problems may lie. Your son/daughter can also hear your side of the story and between yourselves you can agree on what needs to happen to put things right. The help of a third party is crucial to make sure the process runs smoothly.
Trafford YOS try at all times to work with integrity and dedication to the service it provides. If you feel that you have not received this and wish to complain you can do so by following the below link…