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By Dolores Duncan,2014-04-24 16:52
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relianceccscouk

     Child Care Services

Youth Justice Board minimum standards

    for transporting young offenders

    Although endorsed by the YJB, adoption of these minimum standards is a voluntary

    matter. However, in the light of recent court cases it should be noted that they can be used in a court of law to show that an individual or corporate body failed to adhere to „best practice‟. The Youth Justice Board believe that it is in the best interests of any organisations involved in the transport of young offenders to adhere to these standards, not only to safeguard the welfare of vulnerable young people, but also to protect the organisation from the possibility of poor practice and subsequent litigation. Contents

    Summary ............................................................................................................. 2

    Transporting young offenders .............................................................................. 3

    The standards ....................................................................................................... 3

    Underlying Principles ....................................................................................... 3

    Specification .................................................................................................... 4

    Organisational Standards ............................................................................... 4

    Staff Selection and Training Standards .......................................................... 5

    Transport Arrangements Standards ................................................................ 5

    Verification of Standards...................................................................................... 7

    Internal verification, self-assessment checklist .................................................. 7

    Child Care Services

    Summary

     The Youth Justice Board (YJB) reviewed and updated the arrangement for transporting young offenders between court and a place of detention. At present, a young offender sentenced by a court and detained will be transported either to a Young Offender Institute (YOI) or to a Secure Training Centre (STC). A young offender remanded into the care of a local authority (LA) will be transported under arrangements determined by the individual local authority.

    As part of that review, the YJB developed a set of minimum standards that could be adopted by escort agencies and local authorities when transporting young offenders. There was widespread consultation with:

    ; The Prison Escort Service;

    ; Contractors involved in escort duties; and

    ; Local authorities.

    The YJB concluded that they should endorse the standards and encourage local authorities to implement them with respect to their own transport arrangements and use their contracting procedures to ensure that are adopted by any agency employed to transport young offenders.

    The aim of this report is to set out the standards and provide a self-assessment checklist that can be applied by a local authority to its own arrangement or incorporated in contracts with third parties. The standards cover:

    ; Organisational standards, the type of organisation and evidence of

    sustainability and insurance cover;

    ; Staff selection and training standards, ensuring that staff employed possess

    the relevant skills and that there are no legal impediments that might raise

    questions about their suitability to work with vulnerable young people;

    ; Transport arrangements standards, the type of vehicle, conditions and the

    number of staff engaged in the transport activity.

    The report is set out as shown below:

    ; Summary:

    ; Section Two: identifies the key reason for introducing minimum

    standards for the transport of young offenders;

    ; Section Three: sets the standards, covering their:

    ; Underlying principles; and

    ; Specification.

    ; Section Four: considers the verification of the standards, both internally

    and externally.

    2 | Page

    Child Care Services

    Transporting young offenders

    For some time the Youth Justice Board has been concerned about the conditions under which young offenders are transported. This concern has two roots:

    ; The perception that inadequate conditions sometimes prevail during

    transportation and the potential danger to the welfare of the young people

    resulting from those conditions; and

    ; The need to ensure that all possible steps are taken to maximise the

    success of detention as a tool to reduce re-offending.

    The Youth Justice Board reviewed the risks associated with the present system and the use of unregulated escort agencies. Following on from that review, a set of minimum standards were developed that could be adopted to ensure a high standard of safety, security and comfort were observed during the conveyance of young offenders. These standards covered:

    ; Organisational: the legal standing, status, financial propriety and trading

    history of the organisation undertaking the transport duties;

    ; Staff selection and training: the selection, training and verification of

    staff employed in the transport of young people; and

    ; Transport arrangements: the mode and conditions of transportation,

    collection response and delivery times, the transmission of documents and

    staff conduct.

    The Youth Justice Board has indicated that it wishes to endorse these standards and encourage local authorities support them. This would mean local authorities applying the standards when they directly undertake the transport of young offenders and requiring organisations they contract with to observe the standards also.

    The standards

    Underlying Principles

    The principles underpinning the design of these standards are that:

    ; All young offenders should be treated with dignity and respect at all times;

    ; The transport arrangements for young offenders should support the ethos

    of the care centre to which they are being transported;

    ; The transport arrangements should seek to minimise the risk of self and

    third party harm / damage; and

    ; Young offenders should be transported humanely and that the level of

    comfort should be commensurate with modern standards and the duration

    of the journey.

    3 | Page

    Child Care Services

    Specification

    The following standards are designed to cover all aspects of the transport arrangements for young offenders. They are broken down into three categories:

    ; Organisational: the legal standing, status, financial propriety and trading

    history of the organisation;

    ; Staff selection and training: the selection, training and verification of

    staff employed in the transport of young people; and

    ; Transport arrangements: the mode and conditions of transportation,

    collection response and delivery times, the transmission of documents

    and staff conduct.

    Each of these areas is covered in detail below.

    Organisational Standards

    Organisational standards relate to the standing of the organisation in terms of its ability to deliver a service over the lifetime of the contract or agreement. They presume that a local authority has entered into a contractual arrangement with a third party. Accordingly, they do not apply when a local authority engages in direct