Youth Justice Board chair Rod Morgan resigned after being told that his contract would not be extended beyond the Spring, Community Care can reveal.
Morgan, who has been in post for almost three years years, said in an open letter to colleagues in the youth justice sector that he did not believe he had the “confidence” of Home Secretary, John Reid.
He also said he believed the youth justice system was “fit for purpose” – an apparent swipe at Reid’s comments on the state of the Home Office made last year.
In recent months Rod Morgan has raised concerns about the record numbers of youth offenders placed in custody.
At the Youth Justice Convention in November last year he clashed with Respect tsar Louise Casey over criticisms that youth justice workers did not make sufficient effort to engage with the public.
The Home Office would not respond to the letter. In a statement, Home Office minister Baroness Scotland thanked Morgan to the “vision, strong commitment and enthusiasm” he brought to the role.
Morgan took up the post in April 2004 – from his predecessor Lord Norman Warner – on a three-year contract and has decided not to seek a second term in office.
Chief executive Ellie Roy paid tribute to Morgan, saying: “He has been an inspiration, not only to staff of the YJB, but to all those working to reduce re-offending by children and young people and to protect the public.”
The post will be advertised shortly.