The Rt Hon Lord McNally, Chairman of the Youth Justice Board for England & Wales (YJB) said:
“ The Government’s next steps for youth justice reform seek to address, among other things, the concerns about weaknesses in the current youth custodial estate which have been previously raised by the Youth Justice Board and major stakeholders.
“ Moving the youth secure estate into a new ‘Youth Custody Service’, which will maintain a child-focussed ethos and a new specialist workforce, is a welcome step. The real test of the efficacy of this and associated reforms will be whether the new structure delivers what the Youth Justice Board has always aspired to – a welfare-based and therapeutic approach towards addressing a child’s offending behaviour, so that they are given every opportunity to go on to live fulfilled and crime-free lives.
“ There could be no better indication that the Government endorses this direction of travel than the appointment of Charlie Taylor as my successor. I am handing over to him a strong Board, dedicated staff and a YOT structure which will continue to deliver holistic and cross-disciplinary services to young offenders at local level.
“ Charlie will be building on the successes of the YJB over the last 17 years; but will bring to the task personal qualities and experience, the better to meet the formidable challenges youth justice still faces going forward.”
Notes to editors
Read the ministerial statement on the MoJ website