Letter to the Youth Justice Minister raises the alarm about deteriorating conditions in the children’s secure estate
An open letter from the Alliance for Youth Justice and 30 other organisations working with and on behalf of children and young adults in the criminal justice system, has raised the alarm to the Minister of State for Prisons, Parole and Probation about deteriorating conditions in the children’s secure estate and the desperate measures being taken by those in charge.
The letter highlights grave concerns about the appalling and potentially unlawful treatment of children and young people in Young Offender Institutions; the proposed rollout of PAVA spray to the children’s secure estate; and the significant increase in the number of young people aged 18 or over being detained.
The letter sets out how ‘Operation Safeguard’, put in place due to capacity failures in the adult estate, has driven a “rapid and significant” increase in the number of young people aged 18 or over being held in the children’s secure estate.
The letter reads “It is clear that the children’s secure estate cannot meet the needs of children and young people. It cannot cope with an increasing population, let alone while also grasping the different considerations needed for over 18s.”
It suggests that the hardening and ‘adultifying’ of the children’s estate is “totally unjustifiable”.
Read the full letter here
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Published on 24th July 2023