It’s not about the offending!

A new approach to youth justice...

This week the Youth Justice Board published it’s annual stats report.

There’s good news again – fewer kids in prison, and fewer in the system generally.

Photo courtesy of ©123rf/Bram Janssens

But we still have a re-offending rate of 37.9% – pretty much the same as last year (and still a good bit higher than it was 10 years ago!)

Here’s how we might fix it…

Continue Reading »

How to promote good mental health…

...in Looked After Children...

Life can be tough. Particularly for kids in the care system.

The very fact of being in care means life has already been very tough!

Image courtesy ©123rf/Jacqueline Moore (adapted)

Image courtesy ©123rf/Jacqueline Moore (adapted)

Aside of meeting children’s physical needs for a place to live, there are the huge needs that spring from family separation and a poor start in life. So…

How do we promote good mental health for Looked After kids?…

Continue Reading »

Why the brain matters in youth justice…

Neuro-disability: what it is & what to do about it...

The very first youth justice case I had, involved brain injury.

It took me the best part two years to discover this, by which time it was too late. The lad went to custody. Needlessly.

Sketch - Brain matters in YJ

Image courtesy of ©123rf/likewise

So it’s crucial that those working with all troubled teenagers know a bit about neuro-disability…

Here’s a summary of the issues…

Continue Reading »

Left outside – when Dad or Mum goes to prison…

A parent going to prison isn’t the fault of the child. Obviously. Yet thousands of children suffer as a result…

Father & child holding hands through bars...

Photo courtesy ©iStockphoto/patanasak

Imagine coming home from school to find that Dad or Mum have gone to jail. This is the reality for around 230,000 children in the UK.

So what needs do these children have?…

Continue Reading »

Basically…..Porn Is Everywhere

Image 26-05-2013 at 20.46

This report, entitled “Basically… porn is everywhere,” was commissioned by the office of the Children’s Commissioner for England.  The work was led by Middlesex University and was a collaboration of four universities.  The guiding questions for the enquiry were:

1. Identify and assess the existing evidence base on children and young people’s access and exposure to pornography.

2. Identify and assess the existing evidence base on the effects that access and exposure to pornography have on children and young people’s sexual expectations, attitudes and behaviours.

3. Draw upon existing literature reviews and meta-analyses on the associations between access and exposure to sexualised or violent visual imagery on children and young people, and consider whether this bears relevance to the issue in question.

To read and/or download the report, click the image above, or here.

© Jonny Matthew 2013

 

Brain Injury – Implications for Criminal Justice…

Shattered lives

Professor Huw Williams’ report, “Repairing Shattered Lives” summarises the nature and implications of brain injury in three parts:

  1. brain systems and development
  2. implications for offending; and
  3. key action points

This report is an important addition to recent reports on health issues in young people.

For those who are interested in learning more about the brain and the impact of traumatic or acquired brain injury, it’s a brilliant reference resource.

© Jonny Matthew 2013

MoJ Green Paper Consultation – Transforming Youth Custody…

Green paper

The Ministry of Justice has announced its intention to change the thrust of the secure estate to concentrate much more on education.  It has published a Green Paper, “Transforming Youth Custody”, laying out its plans.  The consultation exercise is seeking views on how best to implement the proposals; it closes on the 30 April 2013. Click the logo above for the paper& consultation document.

© Jonny Matthew 2013