Young Offenders: Reoffenders

Justice written question – answered on 11th January 2010.

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Photo of Michael Gove Michael Gove Shadow Secretary of State (Children, Schools and Families)

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what data his Department collect on youth reoffending at middle layer super output area level; and where such data are published.

Photo of Claire Ward Claire Ward Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Ministry of Justice

The published National Statistics on juvenile reoffending in England and Wales are not broken down by area. As part of the National Indicator Set, NI19-Juvenile Reoffending provides these data at the local level, but data are only available at the Youth Offender Team level. Youth Offender Team areas are not coterminous with local authorities in all cases-tables including this information have been placed in the Libraries of the House.

Breaking the data down to smaller areas would be likely to result in figures which were too small to be meaningful.

Juvenile reoffending data at the Youth Offender Team level is available for 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2008. For 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 data are based on a cohort of offenders that received a pre-court disposal (reprimand or final warning) or a first-tier or community penalty or were released from custody between October and December of that year. Data on this previous measure for the 2002-2005 cohorts were reported in early 2004-2007 respectively. After 2007 the basis of the measure changed to offenders that received a pre-court disposal (reprimand or final warning) or a first-tier or community penalty or were released from custody between January and March. Data on this new basis are available for the 2005 and 2008 cohorts-the former submitted retrospectively in September 2008, and the latter returned in July 2009.

The local juvenile reoffending measure differs from the published national statistics on juvenile reoffending. The primary difference is that the data source is administrative data held by youth offending teams, whereas the national statistics are produced using the police national computer. There are therefore differences in the offences which count towards reoffending. In addition to this, local juvenile reoffending data is based on a one year follow up period with a further three months allowed for any cautions or convictions to occur, whereas the national statistics allow a six month period for cautions or convictions.

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