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Lord Molyneaux of Killead: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Lord for giving way. I think the point that was also made by the noble Lord, Lord Thomas, was that there needed to be some release of information as regards the scale of the surrender, decommissioning, or whatever we may call it. Otherwise, there will be no public confidence in the procedure and there will be no perception that it is working. That is the point that is being made.

Lord Dubs: My Lords, I understand what the noble Lord says and I appreciate the importance of it. I think that is a point that the commission will have to take on board: it will have to make sure that as part of the process the participants in the talks and the general public are kept in the picture as to what is happening. I take the point that, if it is happening secretly and no one knows that decommissioning is taking place, there will be a lack of confidence in the process.

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I was talking about comments made by some of the participants in the talks to which the noble Lord referred. Reference has been made to the way Gerry Adams views the process. Frankly that is not the way that we see it. We have as our ultimate aim peace, prosperity and reconciliation in Northern Ireland. That has to be our aim. It is the outcome that we seek in the talks.

I conclude by again thanking noble Lords for their helpful and positive comments, which the Government will bear in mind as we proceed with these matters. I am sure that the commission will also bear them in mind in regard to its responsibilities.

On Question, Motion agreed to.

Baroness Farrington of Ribbleton: My Lords, I beg to move that the House do now adjourn during pleasure until 8.45 p.m.

Moved, That the House do adjourn during pleasure until 8.45 p.m.--(Baroness Farrington of Ribbleton.)

Moved accordingly, and, on Question, Motion agreed to.

[The Sitting was suspended from 8.20 to 8.45 p.m.]

Crime and Disorder Bill [H.L.]

Consideration of amendments on Report resumed.

Clause 29 [Local provision of youth justice services]:

Lord Falconer of Thoroton moved Amendment No. 85:

Page 22, line 17, leave out ("established under section 3 of the Police Act 1996").

The noble and learned Lord said: My Lords, with the leave of the House I shall speak to Amendments Nos. 86, 94, 95 and 96. This series of technical amendments provides that for the purposes of Clauses 29 to 33 of the Bill "police authority" should have the same meaning as in Section 101(1) of the Police Act 1996. As presently drafted, the narrower definition in Section 3 of the 1996 Act is used, which excludes the police authorities for the Metropolitan Police and the City of London Police (that is, the Home Secretary and the Common Council of the City of London respectively).

This is anomalous. The Government consider that the police authorities for London should be covered in the same way as police authorities outside London in respect of the new youth justice arrangements established under Clauses 29 to 33. These include the duty to co-operate with local authorities in the provision of youth justice services and youth offending teams and the requirement to be consulted by local authorities in the formulation of youth justice plans. A similar amendment was made to Clause 17 at Committee stage. I beg to move.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

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Clause 30 [Youth offending teams]:

Lord Falconer of Thoroton moved Amendment No. 86:

Page 23, line 23, leave out ("established under section 3 of the Police Act 1996").

The noble and learned Lord said: My Lords, I have just spoken to this amendment. I beg to move.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord Falconer of Thoroton moved Amendment No. 87:

Page 23, line 40, leave out ("with").

The noble and learned Lord said: My Lords, I spoke to this amendment on the previous day of Report stage. I beg to move.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord Northbourne moved Amendment No. 88:

Page 24, line 3, at end insert--
("(7) The Secretary of State shall reimburse to the relevant police authority, probation service, health authority and local authority for the reasonable cost of providing persons to be members of a youth offending team, and of fulfilling the duties imposed upon youth offending teams by subsection (6) above.").

The noble Lord said: My Lords, I believe, as I think many noble Lords do, that this is an important Bill. Clauses 29 and 30 are particularly important. If they work properly, they will be of enormous benefit not only to the youth justice service but also to the young people involved. I tabled this amendment because I am concerned that the Government are in danger of falling into the same trap as the previous administration fell into in relation to the Children Act.

That Act was an innovative and important piece of legislation. It contained a number of new elements, and a number of new duties and responsibilities were laid upon local authorities. However, little or no provision was made for funding. What happened was that some local authorities did their best to ignore the obligations laid upon them; others simply robbed Peter to pay Paul. That is why, today, in many local authorities there is virtually no youth service. That is why playing fields have been sold off. There are few outdoor activities, and school visits and residentials scarcely exist in primary schools and are much rarer in secondary schools.

The Bill also imposes substantial new duties, not only on local authorities but on the Probation Service, the health services, the police and so forth. As I understand it, the obligations that a youth offending team will have to undertake include assessment and intervention; work in support of police remands and warnings; the supervision of community sentences; ensuring that there is an appropriate adult service; the provision of bail information; bail supervision and support; the placement of young people in open or secure accommodation; remand fostering and approved lodgings during the pre-trial period; court work and the preparation of reports; and involvement in through-care and undertaking post-release supervision following a custodial sentence. Other duties may also be imposed on youth offending teams by the Secretary of State.

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As to funding, the government proposal appears to be that teams and associated youth justice services will be established and operated on the basis of the resources available in 1999-2000 to the local authority, social services and education departments, the Probation Service, the police and the health authority, and according to the pattern of responsibilities for youth justice work which is determined by the chief officer's group and set out in the youth justice plan. In other words, they are going to have to do that out of the money they have.

That seems unrealistic. Let us take the Probation Service, for example. The service has suffered funding cuts in real terms over the past two years, and another cut is envisaged in the forthcoming year. The Probation Service, on average across the country, uses only 10 per cent. of its resources on young people under the age of 18. Many of the duties under the provisions of this Bill will require the Probation Service to spend many more resources on persons under the age of 18. How will that be funded? Will it be by cutting back on the services to the 18 year-olds and older? I should be grateful for an indication from the Minister.

I declare an interest as chairman of the children's department at Toynbee Hall. Last week, the worker who runs the youth department--we have only two full-time workers--came to me and asked whether it would be appropriate for him to put his name down as a possible member of a youth offending team. I had to say yes, as he is a man who would do the job enormously well. But how are we going to manage to carry on our existing work if he is taken away from us for perhaps one or two days a week to operate in connection with a youth offending team?

Of course, if the measures in the Bill eventually succeed, there will be economies in other areas of youth justice which may enable local authorities, the police and the Probation Service to deploy fewer resources in other areas in order to fund the services envisaged in the Bill. But there is a timing difference. Those advantages will happen only when the provisions of this Bill have started to work. Therefore is the Treasury prepared to pump prime? The Treasury does not have a very good historical record on prevention. It is not keen to spend a penny today even if it will save a pound tomorrow. I hope that even if the Minister cannot accept the amendment as it stands, he might be prepared to say, "Yes, the Treasury is a party to this Bill. Yes, the Treasury has made the commitment that it will make this Bill work", and say that it will provide the pump-priming finance that is needed to make it work. I beg to move.

The Earl of Mar and Kellie: My Lords, these two amendments bring us face to face with reality. The proposed youth justice system will work only if it is properly staffed and paid for. Nothing will be worse than if this scheme of useful intervention were to start out with an inadequate budget. The various authorities involved will all have to put in several members of staff. Those members of staff are already doing statutory work in the main, and the switch to this new, more extensive work has to mean that the existing tasks will be given

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less priority. Not only will there be a requirement for more resources in the conventional sense of money; there will also be a need for new ideas. Training and development work will be needed if the new regime is to intervene effectively in the lives of those committed to it by the youth courts. I have to hope that there are lots of ideas held latently by those who will staff the youth offending teams.

I agree with the noble Lord who introduced the amendment that since the 1960s we have seen the rise and subsequent demise of the youth service. There now seems to be little hope for outdoor education, certainly in the statutory sector. The only hope now seems to be lottery funding. I must record that that has occurred in Clackmannanshire satisfactorily. However, that is an affront to the principle of additionality. The need for financial and intellectual resources to be put in place prior to the start leads me to support the amendment.

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