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Young Offenders: Family Contact

House of Lords written question – answered on 30th October 2013.

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Photo of Baroness Stern Baroness Stern Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether the National Offender Management Service or the Youth Justice Board have issued instructions or guidance to establishments detaining children about the importance of family contact and how the establishment should support such contact; and whether they will place a copy of any such guidance in the Library of the House.

Photo of Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Lords Spokesperson (Department of Business, Innovation and Skills), Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)

The Government recognises the importance of young people maintaining contact with their family during custody to support welfare needs and improve chances of successful rehabilitation.

The Youth Justice Board have issued a series of guidance documents entitled ‘Key Elements of Effective Practice (KEEP)’, one of which is on parenting. This guidance is used by secure establishments to assist with promoting positive contact and involvement of families of young people.

The National Offenders Management Service Prison Service Instruction (PSI) 08/2012 – ‘Care and Management of Young People’, sets out that Governors of under-18 Young Offenders Institutions must make arrangements to promote positive contact and involvement of families of young people both during their period in custody and after release. PSI 08/2012 also sets out that young people must be provided with facilities to write, have access to telephones and be encouraged and assisted to maintain contact with their family.

Copies of these documents are placed in the libraries of the Houses of Parliament.

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