Initiative to help young offenders
A new initiative has been launched to help young offenders secure employment.
Justice Minister David Ford and Employment and Learning Minister Stephen Farry today welcomed the agreement to improve opportunities for young offenders who struggle to find work, or remain in education or training.
The Youth Justice Agency and the Department of Employment and Learning (DEL) Careers Service will now work in partnership so that young offenders, whether within the community or in custody, receive appropriate and timely assistance with their career planning.
Justice Minister David Ford said: “A significant proportion of young people who offend are not in education, training or employment. Unless we can provide them with the necessary support and equip them with the skills they need, whether that is by going back into education, training or helping to find a job, then it will become increasingly difficult to break their cycle of crime.
“This partnership agreement between the Youth Justice Agency and DEL is part of my wider commitment to reduce the levels of re-offending. The reality is that the majority of people in custody will one day be released back into the community and if we are to stop them re-offending, then appropriate careers advice must be delivered on the ground.
“By securing employment, entering training or going back into education, people are less likely to re-offend. This partnership agreement will see the Youth Justice Agency and the Careers Service working together to provide opportunities for these young people to lead them away from their offending behaviour and ultimately help make our communities safer for everyone.”
Speaking at the launch, Dr Farry said: “Unfortunately when people become involved in crime at an early age it can have a long term effect on their ability to participate in education, training and employment.
“I consider it essential that these young people have access to professional careers guidance to provide them with information about employment opportunities, support them to make appropriate career decisions and help them to make effective career plans.
“By working in partnership with the Youth Justice Agency, my Department’s Careers Service will be able to offer a wide range of careers information, advice and guidance services to young offenders, their parents/guardians and support workers.
“This will provide young people with the opportunity to develop realistic career plans and address barriers to education, training and employment.
“By supporting young offenders to re-engage with the labour market this will lead to long term benefits for individuals, the economy and society as a whole and help to reduce re-offending rates.
“The importance of appropriate career planning cannot be overstated. This partnership agreement presents an excellent opportunity to ensure coordinated support and promote effective employment outcomes for these young people.
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Weather for Londonderry
Wednesday 19 June 2013
Temperature: 10 C to 17 C
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