The United Kingdom is second only to America in punitive
attitudes towards youth justice, according to a survey of public
The study by the National Association for the Care and
Resettlement of Offenders (Nacro) found 51 per cent in England and
Wales said a second time young burglar should be locked up,
compared with only 12 per cent in France. In USA, the figure was 56
Nacro blamed the public’s misconception of the extent of
youth offending. Nearly 90 per cent of all crime is committed by
adults, but three quarters of those surveyed think young people
commit a large proportion or a majority of all crime.
Nacro’s spokesperson Chris Stanley said: “The
public’s perception of youth crime should be as much a cause
for concern as the scale of young offending itself.
“A long-term solution to youth crime must be built on a
realistic assessment of the scale of the problem. If the public
overestimate how much crime is committed by young people, it makes
it much more difficult to have an informed and balanced debate
about solutions,” he concluded.