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Wednesday 25 April 2012



Youth Inclusion Programme (Bristol)

The Petition of residents of Bristol,

Declares that, after nine years of working with the families and young people of East Central Bristol, there is now a real risk that the East Bristol Youth Inclusion Programme will not have its funding renewed; and notes that the Petitioners believe that this cut will have a negative impact, not just on local young people, but also on the wider community.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to ensure that money for preventative work remains ring-fenced, so that young people can be given the necessary support to remain out of the youth justice system, and live fulfilling and empowered lives.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.—[Presented by Stephen Williams , Official Report, 2 March 2011; Vol. 524, c. 426 .]


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Observations from the Secretary of State for Justice:

Government policy is to enable local authorities to make their own funding decisions based on local needs. We believe that local areas are best placed to commission services which affect local people and it is right that local areas receive the maximum amount of funding available to commission these services. Consequently we have been working with the Department for Communities and Local Government to provide local authorities with flexible funding streams by removing unnecessary ring-fences.

Under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998, the Youth Justice Board (YJB) is given the power to make grants to the youth offending teams and this grant has to be spent in accordance with the YJB’s own statutory responsibilities. The total amount of funding allocated to the Bristol Youth Offending Team by the Youth Justice Board in 2011-12 was £962,230 out of a total figure of £3,340,255. In effect this funding is paid in the form of a single youth justice grant. We do not specify what youth justice services the funding should be used to support. Youth offending teams have discretion to use their YJB grant as they see fit in order to achieve the objectives of the youth justice system. This includes funding to support the full range of prevention activities.

In relation to preventive work, local authorities in England receive an allocation from the UK Government for early intervention through the Early Intervention Grant. This may be used for the purposes of youth crime prevention.