Young people in custody

HM Inspectorate of Prisons and the Youth Justice Board has published the survey of children in custody 2013/14, an analysis of 12 to 18 year olds’ perceptions of their experience in secure training centres (STC) and young offender institutions (YOI).

Key findings include that:

  • 87 percent of those surveyed in STCs were male;
  • In STCs 95 percent said they knew what the rewards and sanctions scheme was but just under 72 percent thought it was fair;
  • In STCs only 68 percent of sentenced children said they had done something at their centre to make them less likely to reoffend;
  • In secure training centres only 74 percent said they knew where they would be living on release;
  • 41 percent of boys in YOIs were from a BME background, 42 percent were Christian, 22 percent Muslim, and 6 percent reported a Gypsy or Traveller background;
  • A third of boys in YOIs had been in local authority care at some point;
  • 11 percent of boys in YOIs said they had children;
  • 29 percent of boys in YOIs said they had felt unsafe there at some point and 11 percent felt unsafe at the time of the survey;
  • 25 percent of boys in YOIs said that they had been victimised by staff and 22 percent by other boys;
  • 38 percent of boys in YOIs said they had been physically restrained, 28 percent had been held in the care and separation unit, 63 percent had had an adjudication and 52 percent had had a minor report; and
  • 23 percent of boys said they had an emotional or mental health problem and 69 percent of these were receiving help.

To download the full report visit

The Ministry of Justice has published statistics which show that the number of under of 18s in custody has risen slightly with 1,055 young people in custody in November 2014, compared with 1,044 in October 2014, but is still down 174 on November 2013. For further information visit

The Criminal Justice Joint Inspection has published a report, entitled Girls in the criminal justice system, on how youth offending teams and secure establishments work with girls to stop them offending and protect them from harm.

A key message from the report is that many of these girls are exposed to the risk of sexual exploitation and teams need to be better equipped to deal with it.

For further information visit To download the report visit