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New youth violence deterrence programme launches

A £7m programme to deter young people from youth violence is being rolled out across five cities in the England.

The scheme will continue until August 2025 across Coventry, Nottingham, Leicester, Manchester and Wolverhampton after a £3m investment by the Home Office alongside a further £4m from the Youth Endowment Fund (YEF)

The programme will use a ‘tried and tested’ approach called focused deterrence which YEF research has found to have a 33 per cent effectiveness rate in reducing crime. Young people over the age of 14 involved in or at risk of becoming involved in violence will be identified and offered targeted support which includes mentoring, education access, training and employment opportunities, mental health services, and housing advice.

Delivery will be led by the West Midlands Violence Reduction Partnership in Coventry and Wolverhampton; Nottingham City Council and Nottingham Violence Reduction Unit in Nottingham; the Violence Reduction Network in Leicester and the Greater Manchester Violence Reduction Unit in Manchester.

Policing Minister Chris Philp said: “In March 2019 the Home Office committed to supporting the Youth Endowment Fund with a ten-year mandate and £200 million of funding to help prevent young people becoming involved in violence.

“Focused deterrence is proven to reduce crime. This £7 million programme will offer young people a route out, combining community support and mentoring to encourage them to seek help, as well as swift enforcement action to divert them away from violence”.

Jon Yates, executive director at the YEF, added: "Focused deterrence has worked around the world, reducing crime by over 30 per cent. It’s time to know whether it can work in England. Violence is not inevitable – we can bring it down. The important thing is not about being tough on crime or being soft on crime. The important thing is being smart on crime. We need to do what works.”

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Published on 6th June 2023