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Research reports and publications

This section contains details of primary research, systematic literature reviews and evaluations of national initiatives related to behaviour and engagement in learning for young people within the criminal justice system.


Thomas J, Vigurs C, Oliver K, Suarez B, Newman M, Dickson K, Sinclair J (2008) Targeted youth support: Rapid Evidence Assessment of effective early interventions for youth at risk of future poor outcomes. In: Research Evidence in Education Library. London: EPPI-Centre, Social Science Research Unit, Institute of Education, University of London.

Rapid Evidence Assessment investigating early interventions for youth at risk of poor outcomes. This included a review of multi-agency interventions for drug or alcohol abuse, poor mental health and anti-social behaviour, under-18 conceptions, therapeutic foster care and youth offending.

 

NACRO, 2009, Girls in Custody, CfBT Education Trust

This research, carried out by Nacro youth crime section, reviews the current provision for girls in custody and raises serious concerns about the treatment of girls in the youth justice system. Girls in custody are often ignored in discussions about the youth justice system and in the design of regimes for young offenders. This is regrettable since a significant minority - in recent years between 20-25% - of young people in custody are female.  The number of custodial sentences for girls has risen in a dramatic and disproportionate way in recent years. While the total number of custodial sentences for juveniles rose by just over 50% 1992-2006, the rise in custodial sentences for girls rose by nearly 300%. There is a public perception that this represents a change in behaviour on the part of girls. There is little hard evidence to support this view. It seems instead that what is changing is the response to girls who offend and this response has become more punitive.

 


Wikstrom P and Treiber K (2008) Offending Behaviour Programmes: Source document. YJB

This document presents a systematic review of research from the past five years regarding the effectiveness of cognitive behavioural and multisystemic offender-oriented crime prevention programmes for young people.


Ghate D, Hauari H, Hollingworth K and Lindfield S (2008) Parenting: Source document. YJB

This review was commissioned as a background source document to accompany guidance produced by the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales (YJB), identifying key elements of effective practice in interventions in the youth justice context. It has not been written primarily for an academic or research audience, but for managers and practitioners working in the youth justice field who are directly involved in providing, or brokering access to, services for young people who offend and their families. The review offers an accessible guide to the current state of the evidence base on effective interventions and services, helping youth justice practitioners and managers to be aware of and deliver more rigorously evidence-based services.

 


Grimshaw R (2008) Young People who Sexually Abuse: Source document, YJB

The aim of this review was to identify the elements of an effective service in relation to assessing young people who sexually abuse, and providing or securing access to interventions to address their offending behaviour and increase protective factors.

Mason P and Prior D (2008) Engaging Young People who Offend: Source document. YJB

This review was commissioned as a background source document to accompany guidance produced by the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales (YJB), identifying key elements of effective practice in interventions in the youth justice context. The focus is on effective techniques for engaging young people who offend, although it also considers young people at risk of offending. The early work for this review indicated that there is a paucity of research that focuses upon effective techniques for engaging both these groups of young people. Continued searching of the literature, use of multiple and varied search terms, and exploration of databases around particular themes failed to uncover a useful mass of studies upon which robust conclusions could be drawn. Thus, an exploration of practice literature from the areas of social work, probation and youth justice, and youth work was incorporated so that relevant messages from this body of work, often rooted in evidence of good or emerging practice if not research and evaluation, could be included.

 

Britton J and Farrant F (2008) Substance Misuse: Source document. YJB

This review was commissioned as a background source document to accompany guidance produced by the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales (YJB), identifying key elements of effective practice in interventions in the youth justice context. It has not been written primarily for an academic or research audience, but for managers and practitioners working in the youth justice field who are directly involved in providing, or brokering access to, services for young people who offend and their families. The review offers an accessible guide to the current state of the evidence base on effective interventions and services, helping youth justice practitioners and managers to be aware of and deliver more rigorously evidence-based services.

 

Sherman L W, Strang H and Newbury-Birch D (2008) Restorative Justice. YJB

The purpose of this source document is to describe the elements of effective service in the delivery of restorative justice and its benefits to victims of youth crime. When combined with evidence on other interventions shown to be effective in reducing repeat offending, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), the potential for restorative justice to reduce crime may be even greater. Evidence on the conditions under which restorative justice services may fail or become counterproductive is an equally important part of the review.

 

Perry A E, Gilbody S, Akers J and Light K (2008) Mental Health: Source document. YJB

This source document presents the findings from a systematic review assessing access to and provision of, services for juvenile offenders with mental health needs across a range of criminal justice settings. The systematic review included studies primarily focusing on mental health services using measures of offending behaviour and mental health outcomes. The studies represent a range of different interventions including, for example, evaluations of multi-systemic therapy (MST), therapeutic communities, cognitive behavioural programs and psychotherapy group work.

 

Commission for Healthcare Audit and Inspection and Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Probation (2009) ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER A second review of healthcare in the community for young people who offend

This is a review of healthcare in the community for children and young people who had been involved, or were likely to become involved, in offending behaviour. The majority of children and young people who have offended, or who are likely to, have more health needs than those who have not offended. These needs span a range of physical, emotional and mental health areas and substance misuse problems, and are potentially linked to crime. They have to be recognised and addressed in order to increase the likelihood of making the lives of these children and young people better and free of crime. The report looks at how much health services contribute to addressing health needs through their involvement in youth offending work in their local areas.

 

Barnoski R (2004) Outcome Evaluation of Washington State's Research-Based Programs for Juvenile Offenders. Washington State Institute for Public Policy

In 1997, the Washington State Legislature passed the Community Juvenile Accountability Act (CJAA) to reduce juvenile crime by establishing 'research-based' programs in the state's juvenile courts. The CJAA funded the nation's first statewide experiment concerning research-based programs for juvenile justice. Because selected treatment programs had already been researched elsewhere in the United States, usually as small scale pilot projects, the question here was whether they work when applied statewide in a 'real world' setting. This report indicates that the answer to this question is yes- when the programs are competently delivered.

 

Drake E (2007) Evidence-Based Juvenile Offender Programs: Program Description, Quality Assurance, and Cost. Washington State Institute for Public Policy

Brief descriptions of six evidence-based interventions, including information regarding quality assurance, program cost per participant (in US Dollars), and a list of the research citations used in the Institute's analysis. Includes Functional Family Therapy, Aggression Replacement Training (ART), Multi-Systemic Therapy (MST), Family Integrated Transitions (FIT), Coordination of Services (COS), Restorative Justice - Victim Offender Mediation

 

Wilcox A and Hoyle C (2004) THE NATIONAL EVALUATION OF THE YOUTH JUSTICE BOARD'S RESTORATIVE JUSTICE PROJECTS, Youth Justice Board

This report is based on an evaluation of 46 restorative justice projects which were funded by the Youth Justice Board (the Board). The data are based on the final reports submitted by the independent local evaluator for each project. The main areas covered in this report include a description of the projects and of the characteristics of the young people on these projects, a discussion of the implementation problems which staff in the projects have faced, and an assessment of the outcomes of the restorative interventions in terms of completion rates, reconviction and feedback from participants. The report concludes with the main lessons that have emerged for evaluation and implementation of restorative justice projects.


 

 

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