YJB urges action on accommodation for young offenders

Within three years no young person will be remanded to custody
as a result of a lack of available accommodation, according to
plans set out by the Youth Justice Board last week.

The proposal, included in the YJB’s young offenders’
sustainable accommodation strategy, will require a “far
greater degree of partnership-working” between local housing
authorities, social services, youth offending teams, and antisocial
behaviour units.

The strategy also proposes an end to the use of unsupported bed
and breakfast accommodation for all 16- and 17-year-olds within
five years, and a greater focus on working with the parents or
carers of young offenders to prevent homelessness in the first

It stresses the need for a range of accommodation options within
each area, but states that Yots and the YJB currently lack the
necessary influence in the housing system to tackle the issue.

The strategy follows last year’s Audit Commission review
of the youth justice system, which identified accommodation as a
key area of concern, and a YJB survey of young people accessing Yot
services in February 2004, which found that 15 % identified
themselves as being in housing need.

Consultation from www.youth-justice-board.gov.uk
– email responses to policytemp@yjb.gsi.gov.uk
by 19 August.

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