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5.3.4 Promoting Effective and Responsible Practice Between Brighton and Hove Youth Offending Service and Brighton and Hove Children’s Social Work


This document reflects the formal agreement of working practice between Children’s Social Work and the Youth Offending Service (YOS).

The chapter details the roles and responsibilities of YOS and Children’s Social Care Staff in working with those young people who come to the attention of the criminal justice system and highlights the assessment of risk in respect of offending behaviour and the court processes and outcomes for young people – particularly with regard to Remand.


Remands to Local Authority Accommodation or to Youth Detention Accommodation Procedure

Placements in Secure Accommodation Procedure

Responsibilities of the Local Authority to Former Looked After Children and Young People in Custody


Statutory guidance has been issued - Children Act 1989 Guidance and Regulations: Volume 2: Care Planning, Placement and Case Review (Supplement) - Looked After Children and Youth Justice - Application of the Care Planning, Placement and Case Review (England) Regulations 2010 to Looked After Children in Contact with Youth Justice Services (April 2014).   

This chapter was introduced to the manual in November 2014.


  1. Principles
  2. Child Protection and Safeguarding
  3. Looked After Young People in the Criminal Justice System
  4. Assessing Risk of Harm of Offending to Others
  5. Appropriate Adult
  6. Pre-Court Disposals
  7. Youth Court Attendance
  8. Remands to Local Authority Accommodation (RLAA) in Both Adult and Youth Courts
  9. Remands to Youth Detention Accommodation (RDA)
  10. Pre Sentence Report (PSR) Requests
  11. Young People Subject to Community Penalties
  12. IOM – Integrated Offender Management
  13. Secure Estate Work
  14. Resettlement
  15. Dispute Resolution
  16. Vulnerable Young People

    Appendix 1: Risk Definitions within Youth Offending Service (YOS)

    Appendix 2: Remands to Youth Detention Accommodation Process

    Appendix 3: YOS Vulnerability Framework

    Appendix 4: Criminal Justice Outcomes

    Appendix 5: Glossary of Terminology

    Appendix 6: Remanded Looked After Children Process – Non Secure Flowchart

    Appendix 7: Remanded Looked After Children Process – Secure to YDA (YOI, STC, SCH) Flowchart

1. Principles

The Crime and Disorder Act 1998 established that the principal aim of the Youth Justice System is to prevent offending by children and young people.

The Brighton and Hove YOS is part of the Children's Health, Safeguarding & Care within Children’s Services in Brighton and Hove City Council and is committed to ensuring that the needs of children and young people in conflict with the law are viewed in a holistic way. The aim of this agreement is that all agencies respond in meeting these needs positively and co-operatively.

The YOS and the Children’s Social Work will work closely together to meet the needs of young people and their families.To this end all relevant information on cases will be shared and both parties will notify each other and involve each other in planning and review meetings on shared cases. If information is not shared it will be necessary to demonstrate that this is in the child’s best interest.

When both parties are involved in providing a service to a young person, all parties must be clear about the specific intervention being provided by each service and the intended outcome of this work. If any of the services are considering closure of a case, it would have to be demonstrated that the needs of the young person had been met and the service involvement is no longer appropriate. It is not acceptable that the sole reason for closure is because the other service has become involved.

The staff of all the above agencies are committed to ensuring that every child, young person or adult associated with its activities will be treated with dignity and respect. Access to opportunity and support will be facilitated in a manner that demonstrates a commitment to the valuing of difference and diversity. The staff of all the above agencies are committed to ensuring that no person will be treated less favourably because of their individual circumstances.

2. Child Protection and Safeguarding

If at any time or as a result of the ASSET, it is felt that there are Child Protection or Safeguarding concerns, a written referral, will be made to the relevant social work team or Front Door for Families, if the case is unallocated to be dealt with in accordance with Pan Sussex LSCB Procedures. The YOS will confirm all referrals in writing, according to the BHCC Child Protection procedures. The written referrals should as well as the concerns, background to the young person, family details, support network information and education details

In urgent situations, out of hours, the referral should be made to the Emergency Duty Service/Out of Hours Team. All referrals will be followed up in writing to the Front Door for Families or relevant team.

Making a referral and responding to a referral will be dealt with in accordance with the LSCB procedures.

3. Looked After Young People in the Criminal Justice System

The South East 7 and the Pan Sussex Protocols state that every effort should be made to avoid unnecessary criminalisation of Children in Care (CiC). This is in recognition that criminalisation can be a barrier to successful transition to adulthood and future life prospects and in recognition that the life histories of many CiC make them particularly vulnerable to involvement in the criminal justice system.

It is every professional’s responsibility when working with CiC to strive to understand aims to reduce the prosecution of children in care, wherever possible, by encouraging the use of Restorative Justice (RJ) approaches. Restorative Justice is a process whereby the victim has an opportunity to be heard and to state the impact of the behaviour and the offender has the opportunity to take responsibility for his or her actions.

Approaches can range from internal mediation within children’s homes between young people and staff without involving the police, to Community Resolution which does involve the police.

Whilst all staff and foster carers working with children in care have a duty to report known or suspected crimes to the police, they will need to use their judgement about where the threshold lies, particularly if the information to hand is slight and the crime, or suspected crime, is of a minor nature.

Wherever possible, the action to be taken will be determined following discussions by all concerned, including the young person, about the most appropriate response.

4. Assessing Risk of Harm of Offending to Others

All young people who have had an indication of medium, high or very high risk of harm with an offence listed on ‘offences which can identify a person who presents a risk, or potential risk, to children’ will have a Risk of Serious Harm Asset completed. This will be passed to a YOS Pod Team Manager to be quality assured and counter signed. The manager will confirm the level of risk posed by a young person as being: Low Risk, Medium Risk, High Risk or Very High Risk (see Appendix 1: Risk Definitions within Youth Offending Service (YOS)). Where a young person is assessed as posing Medium, High or Very High Risk to children a referral will be made to Social Care. This notification, along with the offence analysis, the Asset score and the Risk of Serious Harm Asset will be sent to the Front Door for Families or relevant social work team.

All referrals are to be forwarded to the Front Door for Families or relevant social work team within 24 hours of completion of assessment. The offence analysis and the risk scoring, with the Risk of Serious Harm Assessment, will also be sent.

The Social work Pod Team manager will assess the referral and decide whether to conduct a Section 47 investigation or initial Strengthening Families Assessment. An acknowledgement will be sent back to the YOS Pod Team Manager within 24 hours and any action undertaken will be communicated back within seven working days.

The YOS will ensure the young person is placed on the Multi-Agency Risk Management Panel (MRMP) and a Multi-Agency Risk Management Plan will be developed. Children’s Social Work are a co-opted member of the panel alongside Sussex Police and education and an Independent Reviewing Officer (IRO) will be invited to this meeting.

5. Appropriate Adult

Where a child or young person (under 17) is detained by the Police, it is a requirement of PACE1 that an Appropriate Adult2 is present when the young person is interviewed at the Police Custody Suite. In the first instance, the Police will make every effort to contact the parent or guardian or carer to attend as the Appropriate Adult.

Under PACE where a child or person is 17 they will be given the option of whether to have an appropriate adult or not. Within Brighton and Hove we encourage the police to use an appropriate adult for all young people under 18.

Where the parent or guardian or carer cannot attend, an appropriate adult from The Appropriate Adult Service (TAAS) will be provided and paid for by the YOS. Children in the care of the local authority should have their carer acting as the appropriate adult. In exceptional circumstance for a Brighton and Hove child in care and placed within Brighton and Hove and where agreed by the YOS the TAS service can be used.

Where a carer regularly cannot attend, this should be raised by the YOS to the child / young person’s social worker, IRO and the fostering/agency placement team.

It is not expected that the carer acts as the responsible adult in court.

(1) PACE = Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984
(2) The term ‘Appropriate Adult’ has a specific meaning in PACE; it refers to the adult who must be present to safeguard the welfare of a child detained at a police station. It should not be confused with the term ‘Responsible Adult’ which applies in other situations, e.g. accompanying a child at court.

6. Pre-Court Disposals

Where a young person accepts responsibility for an offence the police have the option of issuing a Caution or Youth Conditional Caution for offences which are not so serious to warrant prosecution. All Youth Conditional Cautions or second caution can only be given following an assessment by the YOS and jointly agreed by police and YOS.

Where the ASSET (assessment) is undertaken on cases open to the Social Work Team the YOS officer will liaise with the relevant Social Worker and together a proposed programme of intervention will be agreed prior to returning the case to the police for either a voluntary intervention, the imposition of the caution or Youth Conditional Caution. A copy of the assessment, together with the proposed rehabilitation programme will be forwarded to the social worker.

7. Youth Court Attendance

All young people aged 16 or under, attending Court should do so with a Responsible Adult2 preferably, but not necessarily, a parent or adult with parental responsibility. The YOS does not provide a Responsible Adult. Where a child or young person is looked after by the Local Authority (Sec. 20 C&YP Act or Sec. 31 C&YP Act 1989), it is the responsibility of the social work team allocated worker to be present, or make arrangements for a Responsible Adult to be in attendance with that young person.

The YOS will notify the social work team manager, or the young person’s Social Worker of Court results on cases open to them.

8. Remands to Local Authority Accommodation (RLAA) in Both Adult and Youth Courts

Part of the YOS role is to reduce the use of secure remands for the 10 –17 year olds.

A YOS Court Duty Officer attends every court where there is a risk a young person will be remanded. Where he or she believes a young person is at risk of being remanded to local authority accommodation he or she will make the appropriate enquiries of the relevant social work team.

Where the YOS duty officer is aware of a young person being at risk of being remanded to local authority accommodation, they will attend Court and undertake a bail assessment. However, the Court may still require a social worker or designated worker to be present within that Court session. The YOS duty officer will ensure that the Court is made aware of the practical difficulties for staff from social work teams in meeting short deadlines for attendance and be asked to be clear about the expectations of the attending worker.

Where a young person is a child in care or where it is thought there may be a period of remand, the Court Officer following their assessment should agree with the social worker a Bail Support Programme to be offered to the court, which might prevent an episode of care or remand. This should be a joint programme between the YOS and social work team. This could include the involvement of the Functional Family Therapy Team where there are risks of family breakdown or problems with the child returning home. The Court Officer is not an alternative to the social work team, but will work in partnership with the social worker in delivering a programme of support. The bail support package will be offered to the court on the bail and support pro forma.

When a young person is remanded to Local Authority Accommodation, they become a Looked After Child and are the responsibility of the Social Work Team. Once a young person is remanded to Local Authority Accommodation the relevant social work team will respond appropriately and take responsibility for provision of a placement. The YOS will inform the social worker, IRO and agency placement team of any remands and follow the Remand Pathway (see Appendix 6: Remanded Looked After Children Process - Non Secure)

If for any reason the social work team want to alter remand conditions they need to apply to the court. The Court Officer can help with this.

To promote joint care planning, the YOS and the relevant social work team staff will give each other as much notice and information as possible and work towards the young person returning home at the end of the placement or moving on to appropriate accommodation.

Where a bail support package has been made part of the remand conditions the YOS will take responsibility for the management of this, the YOS will also take responsibility for the preparation of any PSR request.

9. Remand to Youth Detention Accommodation (RDA)

(Also refer to Appendix 2: Remands to Youth Detention Accommodation Process).

The same procedures as above apply and all those young people who are Remanded to Youth Detention Accommodation (securer estate) including 17 year olds. Once remanded to YDA they will become a Looked After Child for the duration of their remand and the responsibility of the relevant Social Work team. The YOS court officer will ensure the correct Local Authority is identified by the court for all young people.

The YOS will attend Court to try to offer an alternative community programme if that is assessed as appropriate.

Should there be a likelihood the Court will decide to remand to Youth Detention Accommodation then the social work manager from the Local Office should have been informed, were possible. Once the Court decide to Remand to Youth Detention Accommodation the Local Social Work Pod Team manager should be informed immediately and may arrange for a social worker to attend court if required. If a Social Worker is attending, the Court will be given a clear indication of the time that someone will be able to attend. It should be within two hours and wherever possible within the current session.

The YOS are responsible for finding a secure placement through the YJB secure placements team, for organising the secure escorts through the YJB, who transport the young person to the unit and completing post remand assessments. The YOS will inform the secure estate of any concerns regarding the well being of the young person remanded. 

This is based on the YOS Vulnerability Framework listed in Appendix 4. If the young person’s vulnerability is assessed as high or very high, the YOS officer will consider a placement in a Secure Training Centre or an approved Local Authority Secure Children’s Home.

Children’s Social Work (Agency Placement Team) are responsible for funding the placement; Social work teams are responsible for the Looked After documentation and arranging Looked After Review meetings, the YOS will be responsible for the remand planning meetings.

The Independent Reviewing Officer and the agency placement team will be notified of Remands to Youth Detention Accommodation. Where possible, Looked After Review or Me and My World Review meetings will be a joint meeting with the remand planning meetings however this will depend on where the young person is remanded. 

Both the YOS case manager and the Social Worker are required to undertake specific tasks and roles during the period the young person is subject to the Remand to Youth Detention. These include:

  • Complete an assessment within a week of the remand which can be done in the court cells, which will include an assessment of the suitability of placement;
  • Attendance at monthly Remand Planning Meetings/Looked After Reviews (Me and My World Reviews). 

10. Pre Sentence Report (PSR) Requests

Where there is a PSR request the YOS will take responsibility for its preparation, ensuring there is active involvement of the young person and his/her carers in preparation of the report and development of the proposal to the court.

Where the young person is known to Children’s Social Work the social worker will ensure there is timely response to requests for information and the workers ensure there is a joined up Care Plan and joint recommendations made to court.

11. Young People Subject to Community Penalties

Where a young person is known to the YOS and Children’s Social Work are actively working with the young person, all effort will be made by both YOS and Social Work staff to attend relevant meetings within each agency.

Where a young person is known to the YOS and Children’s Social Work are actively working with the young person, all effort will be made for collaboration and social work contribution of their professional opinion. YOS will give sufficient time for a quality assurance response by social work into any Court report.

Further convictions by a young person may result in imposition of Youth Rehabilitation Order

requirements. The Local Authority Residence requirement of a Youth Rehabilitation Order can only be proposed to the Court by the YOS in agreement and partnership with the relevant Social Work Manager.

Prior to all parenting work the YOS must contact the locality office and establish opportunities for any joint working and information sharing on any cases open to Children’s Social Work.

12. IOM – Integrated Offender Management

IOM are a group of young people who have been assessed as presenting a high risk of re-offending and require an inter-agency response. Consideration should be given as to who from Children’s Social Work should be responding to this situation and these young people are discussed at the Multi Agency Risk Management Panel (MRMP), where Children’s Social Work are presented. This will be fed back into case management discussions in Children’s Social Work via their representative.

13. Secure Estate Work

Young people who are open to the local authority and become the subject of secure remand or sentence will remain open cases to Children’s Social Work. The social worker will be invited, should attend and contribute to all review meetings at the secure facility. It must be demonstrated that the needs of that young person have been met before a case is closed. Prior to the closure of a case consultation between relevant YOS and Children’s Social Work staff must take place.

Sentence planning for the young person in the secure estate is the responsibility of the YOS. The involvement of Social Work teams on open cases will be an essential ingredient to successful rehabilitation.

14. Resettlement

The YOS will engage with partners, including the Social Work team, to ensure that resettlement of young people on release from the secure estate is achieved. If housing is an issue this will be discussed between the Young Person and their family, the Social Work Team and if appropriate, the Young Persons Homeless Team and Support Through Care Team for a joint housing assessment, in line with the joint hosing protocol for care leavers (June 2014).

15. Dispute Resolution

It is acknowledged that all parties have the best interests of young people as paramount. However, any differences will be dealt with at case worker level initially and escalated to Pod Team Manager, Head of Service and then Assistant Director as necessary.

16. Vulnerable Young People

Where a young person is at risk of harm from Child Sexual Exploitation or a regular missing young person they will be referred to the Vulnerable Young Persons Meeting, chaired by Children’s Social Work Head of Service.

The YOS will attend as a co-opted member of the meeting. Prior to the meeting the YOS manager will ensure all information is gathered to present at the meeting and where possible the YOS officer will also attend the meeting. All decisions from the meeting will be fed back and incorporated into the YOS plan.

Appendix 1: Risk Definitions within Youth Offending Service (YOS)

Low Risk: No evidence present to indicate likelihood of serious harmful behaviour in the future. No specific risk management work needed.

Medium Risk: Some risk identified, but the offender is unlikely to cause serious harm unless circumstances change. Relevant issues can be addressed as part of the normal supervision process.

High Risk: Risk of serious harm identified. The potential event could happen at any time and the impact would be serious. Action should be taken in the very near future and the case will need additional supervision and monitoring, e.g. local registration, oversight by middle/senior management.

Very High Risk: Imminent risk of harm identified. The young person will commit the behaviour in question as soon as they are able or as soon as the opportunity arises and the impact would be serious. Immediate action is required and is likely to involve intensive multi agency support and surveillance.

Appendix 2: Remands to Youth Detention Accommodation Process

Agreed Practice Procedures Between YOS and Children’s Social Work and the Safeguarding & Review Service

The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPOA) came into force on 3.12.12. 

One of the significant impacts of this legislation is that from 3.12.12 all children and young people (including 17 year olds) who are remanded to secure accommodation (custody) within a criminal court will become child looked after under sec 21 of the Children Act 1989. 

A remand is a decision made by the court before the sentence or trial, where the court has determined that the young person needs to be held in secure accommodation whilst awaiting sentence or trial.

At Risk of Remand

Any young person who is identified by the YOS as being at risk of remand will be seen at court by the YOS Court and Assessment team. The YOS will undertake an assessment and if the youth justice practitioner believes the risk posed can be managed safely within the community, a bail support package will be presented to the court.

If this is unsuccessful and the young person is remanded the following process will be followed:


All placements made within a criminal court will be found by the YOS through the Youth Justice Board Placements Team. The placement will be made based upon the vulnerability, age and gender of the child or young person.

From April 2013, the Local Authority will be responsible for the full cost of the placement.

Typically the placements used are:

  • Swannick Lodge (Local Authority Secure Children’s Home - LASCH) – Hampshire;
  • Vinney Green (LASCH) – Bristol;
  • Medway Secure Training Centre – Kent;
  • Milton Keynes Secure Training Centre (occasionally);
  • Cookham Wood Young Offenders Institution (YOI) (Males) – Kent;
  • Downsview YOI (Females) – Surrey.


Following a remand the communication needs to be open, transparent and timely between social care and the YOS, specifically between the allocated social worker and the allocated YOS officer.

The YOS Court officer will notify the following people immediately and inform them of the remand, the placement and the next court date:

  • Manager YOS Court;
  • Support Through Care Social worker –16+ team;
  • Support Through Care Pod Team Manager –16+ team;
  • Social Work and the Safeguarding & Review Service Front Door for Families Service Manager;
  • Relevant Pod Team Manager CiN, CIC.

The allocated YOS officer will share the Bail Asset and other relevant information with the allocated social worker, once he/she is identified.

Process in Custody

The social worker makes an arrangement to complete an assessment within a week. This can either be at the secure facility or at court (when the young person appears for a second bail application).

If the young person is considered highly vulnerable, or there are significant concerns regarding the custodial placement, the YOS will arrange an Initial Remand Review at the custodial facility within 5 working days and invite the social worker to attend.

In all other cases, the YOS will arrange a Remand Planning Meeting within 10 working days and invite the social worker to attend. The YOS case manager typically chairs the Remand Planning / Review Meetings.

Following the Initial Remand Review Meeting the YOS will visit the young person every month, to review their progress on remand. Wherever possible this meeting will be combined with a Looked After Review (Me and My World Review).

Where a possible the 5 day Looked After Review (Me and My World Review) and the YOS remand planning meeting should be co-ordinated to happen on the same day, one after another so they can feed into each other.

Appendix 3: YOS Vulnerability Framework

Definitions for Vulnerability Assessments

Low Risk: No current evidence to suggest that the young person is vulnerable, in terms of risk to their physical, mental or emotional wellbeing:

  • The young person may have historic vulnerability (e.g. difficult family background) but there are adequate protective factors in place to support the young person and he / she has demonstrated that they are sufficiently resilient to manage issues and stressors in their life without additional support;
  • This could be for example a young person who has a supportive parent, or parents, who is/are fully involved with their life and able to support them in achieving their potential, a young person who has sustained education, training or employment and is progressing well with good prospects, or a young person who is in care but is constructively engaged and has good social networks and it is evident that the young person is coping well on an emotional level with the difficulties they may face;
  • Alternatively the Low score may indicate a young person where there is no evidence of any issues relating to vulnerability.

Medium Risk: Some vulnerability is identified but the risk to the young person’s welfare would not be serious unless there is a change of circumstances:

  • Medium vulnerability risk could include multiple factors, such as the impact of a disruptive or difficult family history (e.g. marital conflict, domestic violence, family breakdown, poor relationships with parents, history of abuse or neglect, accommodation by the Local Authority, etc.), evidence of discrimination, bullying, social isolation, psychological factors (e.g. Asperger’s and Autism, ADHD, mental health issues) or emotional factors, such as depression or self-harm, psychosis or other mental health conditions, educational factors (e.g. poor educational attainment, emotional and behavioural problems undermining ability to learn, or other disruption to education or training), health issues, substance misuse issues (e.g. the young person placing their health and wellbeing at risk via risky practices such as excessive or binge drinking) or other environmental or social factors (e.g. poor housing, social deprivation, etc;
  • This category may include young people who abscond or place themselves at risk but where there are adequate protective factors in place to prevent serious harm, for example, parents or carers take appropriate action, young person always answers mobile;
  • Such young people may lack resilience and will require a level of additional support (i.e. as outlined in the VMP) such as referral to Tier 2 Mental Health support or substance misuse intervention, keep safe work and harm minimisation, monitoring, support with ETE, emotional support and potentially referrals to other services (e.g. TYS, IST) in order to fulfil their potential and keep themselves safe from harm. However, provided that the young person is accessing services and cooperating and the practitioner does not identify risk of immediate physical, emotional or psychological harm, then a medium rating is appropriate.

High Risk: Many or all of the factors identified above are present and the young person is at risk, either from their own behaviour or through the behaviour of others, of physical, emotional or psychological harm which could happen at any time:

  • This would indicate that the risk is serious, for example, the young person has threatened or attempted suicide or is regularly self-harming, with potentially serious consequences, or the young person has placed themselves at risk of serious harm from others, for example they have been sexually or violently assaulted and there are inadequate protective factors in place to prevent recurrence of the harm;
  • This category could include young people with serious substance misuse issues (e.g. intravenous use of Heroin or other drugs, poly-drug use or regular use of hard drugs known to pose a significant threat to health and wellbeing) or whose substance misuse places their health and wellbeing at significant risk (e.g. excessive or binge drinking in environments where they are not safe, such as with adults who may exploit them);
  • Young people who at risk of sexual exploitation, for example where there is evidence of association with adults who are known to groom or sexually exploit young people, or where there is evidence of inappropriate sexual relationships with adults;
  • Young people who have a serious or life threatening health condition which is not treated, or if they have a serious mental health condition which is untreated, such as depression, especially if this is associated with self-harm or suicidal ideation;
  • Young people in this category may lack resilience or the ability to access or benefit from support or intervention, for example, those who are socially isolated and have no family or other support networks, or those who due to their mental or emotional health problems do not seek help or do not trust others to help them (e.g. young people with a history of severe neglect);
  • Such young people will be at risk of significant harm to their physical, emotional or psychological wellbeing if action is not taken to protect and safeguard them.

Very High Risk: Refers to young people meeting the criteria above but where the risk is imminent and likely to have serious consequences, resulting in either death or serious physical harm:

  • This would include young people who are expressing suicidal ideation, have made serious attempts on their life and have a stated plan to continue to do this, and have the opportunity and ability to carry out their plans and there are inadequate safeguards in place to prevent this;
  • Young people who are self-harming to the degree that their life is at risk (e.g. repeated and frequent overdoses of medication or drugs) or they have an underlying health condition which makes such self-harm a very significant risk to their life;
  • Young people whose substance misuse habits are presenting a risk to their life, such as intravenous use of Heroin or other substances within high risk situations, or injecting into parts of their body which place them at imminent risk (e.g. in the neck) of serious physical harm or death;
  • A young person who is resident with or in a relationship with an adult who is likely to seriously assault them either sexually or physically and where there are no protective factors or safeguards in place to prevent this (for example where there is clear evidence of domestic or sexual violence);
  • This category may include young people where the above factors are present and where the young person is not engaging or has disengaged from services, is homeless, where there is evidence of sex working in risky situations and where it is subsequently difficult or impossible to safeguard their health and wellbeing or manage the risk of harm to the young person.

Appendix 4: Criminal Justice Outcomes

Pre Court

The police have introduced Community Resolution (CR) Levels 1, 2 and 3. This is basically a Restorative Justice outcome and the young person is not brought into the criminal justice system. However, if the young person is not eligible for a CR then the police may either issue the young person with a Caution or referred to the YOS for an assessment with a view to issuing a Conditional Caution. The police reserve the right to make the final decision on a young person’s outcome following the assessment.


When a young person is charged with an offence they will appear before a youth court (usually a third offence or a more grave first or second offence such as robbery). If the case cannot be dealt with immediately the court will set a future court appearance and decide whether the young person will get:

  • Unconditional bail – no conditions;
  • Conditional bail – conditions e.g. not to contact the victim before the court date;
  • Remanded to custody – the young person is sent to a secure estate until the court date. The YOS has a part-time Remand support officer, who is responsible for producing bail support Assets and supporting young people at this time.

If the young person pleads not guilty, a date will be set for trial when the magistrates will hear evidence and decide whether or not the person is guilty. If the young person has pleaded guilty then magistrates will decide on the most appropriate action.

The YOS will usually be asked to produce a report on the circumstance of the offence and with recommendations for sentence. This is called a Pre Sentence Report (PSR) and may be a full report, written update or verbal update. The caseworker will assess the young person using Asset and find out more about the offence details to produce a thorough understanding of the person’s circumstances and offending behaviour. The PSR will make recommendations for the most suitable sentence and assist the magistrates with their decision.

If an offence is very serious it may be sent to the Crown Court for sentencing.

The youth court runs on alternate Tuesdays from 09:30am. The YOS provides a court officer and court administrator to Tuesday youth court sessions.


When a young person is remanded into custody, where the care of the local authority or a secure remand they automatically become a looked after young person. If the young person has a social worker they must immediate be informed. If they are not open to social care then……. must be informed. For all young people the YOS/social care protocol followed.


The main court sentences are:

Referral Order

All young people that plead guilty to a first offence in court must receive a Referral Order of between three and twelve months. The only exception to this is cases where they receive an absolute discharge or, (rarely) the offence is so serious that they are sent to custody.

Once a Referral Order has been made, the young person and their parent/carer attend a Youth Offender Panel, made up of a YOS worker and two volunteers from the local community. A contract will be agreed and signed, which can include programmes to address offending behaviour and doing some form of community work to repair the harm that was caused by their offence. The conviction is considered "spent" once the contract has been completed, and does not therefore give the young person a criminal record.

Referral Order panels are run by Jen Young and administrated by Hannah Spooner. Panels are normally held on a Wednesday and Thursday with two sessions; one in the afternoon and one in the evening.

Youth Rehabilitation Order (YRO)

The Youth Rehabilitation Order (YRO) is a generic community sentence for young offenders and combines a number of sentences into one generic sentence. It is the standard community sentence used for the majority of children and young people who offend. It simplifies sentencing for young people, while improving the flexibility of interventions.

The YRO came into effect on 30th November 2009 as part of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008.

The YRO represents a more individualised risk and needs-based approach to community sentencing, enabling greater choice from a ‘menu’ of requirements.

Intensive Supervision and Surveillance Requirement as part of a YRO

An ISS requirement is the most rigorous non-custodial intervention available for young offenders. As its name suggests, it combines unprecedented levels of community-based surveillance with a comprehensive and sustained focus on tackling the factors that contribute to the young person's offending behaviour. An ISS targets the most active repeat young offenders, and those who commit the most serious crimes.

The programme aims to:

  • Reduce the frequency and seriousness of offending in the target groups;
  • Tackle the underlying needs of offenders which give rise to offending, with a particular emphasis on education and training;
  • Provide reassurance to communities through close surveillance backed up by rigorous enforcement.

The intensive supervision is for the first 3 months of the order for 25 hours a week which reduces to a minimum of 5 hours a week for the remainder of the order.


When no alternative is appropriate due to the seriousness of the offence, history of offending and/or risk to the public, young people may be sentenced to custody.

Detention & Training Order (DTO)

Sentences a young person to a period in custody. The orders can be given to any young person aged between 12 and 17. The minimum period for the order is four months and the maximum period is two years. The first half of the order is spent in custody (secure accommodation or a young offender’s institute) and the second half of the order is spent in the community. The community element of the order is supervised by the YOS, and strict YJB is responsible for placing young people in secure accommodation and currently covers all related costs. It is usual for around ten young people from Brighton and Hove to be in custody at any one time.

Appendix 5: Glossary of Terminology

Youth Offending Service (YOS) Terminology

CPS: Crown Prosecution Service
DTO: Detention & Training Order
IOM: Integrated Offender management
ISS: Intensive Supervision and Surveillance (an alternative to custody)
LASPO: Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act
MRMP: Multi Agency Risk management Panels
PSR:  Pre-Sentence Report
RDA: Remands to Youth Detention Accommodation
RLAA: Remands to Local Authority Accommodation
RJ: Restorative Justice
ROSH: Risk of Serious Harm
TAAS: The Appropriate Adult Service
YOI:  Youth Offenders Institution
YOS: Youth Offending Service

Social Care Terminology

STCT: Support Through Care Team
CiC: Child in Care
IRO: Independent Reviewing Officer
LAC: Looked After Child
PIF: Placement Information Form
SW: Social Worker

Appendix 6: Remanded Looked After Children Process – Non Secure Flowchart

Click here to view Appendix 6: Remanded Looked After Children Process – Non Secure Flowchart.

Appendix 7: Remanded Looked After Children Process – Secure to YDA (YOI, STC, SCH) Flowchart

Click here to view Appendix 7: Remanded Looked After Children Process – Secure to YDA (YOI, STC, SCH) Flowchart.