Young offenders will make amends for their actions with community work in Sheffield

A new regional youth justice contract will ensure offenders take responsibility for their behaviour and make amends for the harm they have caused.

Wednesday, 22nd April 2020, 9:42 am
Updated Wednesday, 22nd April 2020, 10:22 am

Sheffield, Rotherham and Barnsley Youth Justice Services are joining together for the new service, called Reparation and Unpaid Work - Doncaster has opted out of joining.

Sam Martin, of Sheffield Council, says in a report: “Youth Justice Services provide support to offenders, provide rehabilitation, tackle the underlying causes of offending and give young people the support they need to break the cycle of offending and build productive and fulfilling lives.

“Reparation is a practical way to pay back harm caused by the offence, either by directly repairing the harm or through constructive work to help the local community.

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“It includes a variety of activities to pay back benefits to the community, including work similar to community service.

“Some of these services offer the opportunity to access work experience and interests which could lead them away from past offending behaviour.

“People and communities have benefited enormously from the work of young people, a lot of time without publicity or praise.

“Placements are drawn from organisations that are not for profit, neighbourhood and community groups, registered charities, local authority departments and companies.”

During 2018-19, the number of young people needing reparation in Sheffield was 141, while in Rotherham it was 61 and in Barnsley 117.

Each young person did an average of 21 hours in Sheffield, 11 in Rotherham and 12 in Barnsley.

Over the next four years, Sheffied will contribute £304,000 towards the new contract, while Rotherham and Barnsley will each pay £152,000.

Mr Martin said: “This will help young people to make amends for their actions, directly to the people and the communities their offence has affected.

“It will put things right and heal relationships, give high satisfaction to victims and reduce re-offending.

“Those directly affected by crime are involved in the process and their wishes are given careful consideration.

“It will achieve positive outcomes for the victim, community and the young person.”

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