Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Stephen Metcalfe MP welcomes new education focus in youth justice system

Stephen Metcalfe, local MP for South Basildon and East Thurrock, has welcomed new proposals from Conservative Justice Secretary Chris Grayling to help young offenders turn their backs on crime.

The new plans, published recently, explore a radically different approach. Transforming Youth Custody: Putting Education at the Heart of Detention aims to deliver value for the taxpayer, reduce reoffending and set young offenders on the path to a better life.

At present, the average cost of a youth custodial place is £100,000 a year - with some as much as £200,000. 73 percent of young offenders who leave custody reoffend within a year.

Welcoming the announcement local MP Mr Metcalfe said: “It is absolutely vital that we tackle re-offending. If we can succeed in turning troubled young people away from a life of crime, and cut reoffending rates, that will mean less crime, fewer victims and safer communities. By putting education at the heart of the approach we can help young offenders to get on in life and make a contribution to society.”

“I urge local youth charities, education experts and other interested parties in South Basildon and East Thurrock to read the consultation document make submissions so that the views from our area can form part of the policy making process.”

Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said: “We cannot go on just doing more of the same, pouring more money into a system doesn't work in the hope of a different outcome.  That doesn’t make any sense to the taxpayer, or to the young people who we should be trying to get back on the straight and narrow.”