Response to youth custody green paper announcement

Press statement

14 February 2013

Howard League for Penal Reform responds to youth custody green paper announcement.

Responding to today’s announcement by Justice Secretary Chris Grayling to introduce a green paper on education and training in youth custody, Frances Crook, Chief Executive of the Howard League for Penal Reform, said:

“We welcome the fact that the government is concentrating on the educational difficulties of children who enter the criminal justice system.

“However, we should never send children to prison to get an education. Confusion is at the heart of these plans, which risk repeating the mistakes of history such as the failing Secure Training Centres where re-offending is sky-high and two children have died.

“Almost all the children who end up in custody  could be dealt with in the community and that is the way to get them back into school, college or training.

“If we put this money into community support for children, we would turn their lives around far more effectively. Pouring good money after bad into the failing, dangerous and violent environment of prison won’t solve the problem.”

Notes to editors

1.    The Howard League for Penal Reform is the oldest penal reform charity in the UK. It is a national charity working for less crime, safer communities and fewer people in prison.

Further information

Rob Preece
Press Officer
Tel: +44 (0)20 7241 7880
Mobile: +44 (0)7714 604955
Email: robert.preece@howardleague.org

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For enquiries outside normal office hours, please call +44 (0)7918 681094.