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Fears over release force some young people back to crime

A report - How Young People Cope With Release states that young people released from custody are struggling to cope with outside life to such an extent that some prefer to reoffend so they can be sent back inside.

It highlights a number of problems young people suffer when they transition to life after custody, including anxious paranoia, agoraphobia and physical tiredness. 

A majority of young offenders found that the period in the early days to weeks following release can be "overwhelmingly stressful", with some feeling disorientated by their attempts to adjust to life in the community.

Young people highlighted the need for more time to be given in young offending institutions to prepare for the challenges of release, and better post-release support by youth offending teams (YOTs) as ways to smooth the transition from custody. 

The report also calls for release on temporary licence to be used more widely in an effort to cut reoffending rates.  

In terms of post-custody, it recommends a structured timetable be put in place for the initial period after release and consideration given to practical support, such as new clothes, to reduce the risk of trauma.