New report outlines progress against Youth Justice Review recommendations.
In a new report, published today, CJI highlights the primary achievement of the Youth Justice Review has been that fewer young people are entering the criminal justice system in Northern Ireland. View full report page
Speaking on the report, Chief Inspector of Criminal Justice in Northern Ireland, Brendan McGuigan said “Inspectors are pleased to report that no child under the age of 18 has been held in an adult prison in Northern Ireland in the last four years, and there has been effective use of youth diversion and other intervention initiatives meaning the number of young people committed to youth custody has dropped.
“The Department of Justice had however fallen short of meeting its own target of 90% achievement of accepted recommendations by March 2014 and Inspectors found that only 59% of recommendations were achieved by 2015. Yet we acknowledge that a lack of political consensus meant that some of the legislative changes envisaged by the Youth Justice Review Team were not possible within the lifetime of the current Northern Ireland Assembly," Mr McGuigan continued.
The Chief Inspector added that while he welcomed the steps taken to reduce the number of young people entering the criminal justice system, Inspectors had found a loss of momentum in implementing the recommendations over the past two years. "That is why I consider the scoping study announced by the Minister of Justice in May presents a timely opportunity to re-focus attention on the key issues that will offer the greatest benefit for the youth justice system in the future," concluded Mr McGuigan.