North Lincolnshire police schemes in line for national awards

editorial image

Two police schemes aimed at tackling youth offending in Humberside have been shortlisted for a national award.

The North Lincolnshire Respect Court programme and the Night Challenge initiative are among five schemes from police forces across the country in line for the Howard League Community Programmes Award.

The Howard League for Penal Reform - a national charity working to reduce crime, create safer communities and see fewer people in prison – launched the competition in 2005 to increase public and government support for community sentences.

Humberside Police said the Respect Court Programme, which is run partnership with North Lincolnshire Magistrates’ Court and North Lincolnshire Council’s Youth Offending Service, was launched in January 2010 and has resulted in a dramatic fall in re-offending rates.

Young people caught offending are taken to Scunthorpe Police Station, where they have their possessions taken off them and are locked in a cell.

They are then brought from custody into the dock at Scunthorpe Magistrates’ Court, where they are forced to explain to the magistrates, in front of their parents, why they are there.

Magistrates then lead a discussion around the consequences of their actions.

The year before the launch of the scheme, Humberside Police saw 27.7 per cent of young people who had been reprimanded coming back to the attention of officers.

Now the re-offending has dropped to 1.7 per cent.

The Night Challenge initiative gives young people the chance to take part in an overnight orienteering experience as a way of interacting with young people who may be on the cusp of offending.

They are spoken to about the consequences of their actions.

Chief Superintendent Scott Young said: “Humberside Police are incredibly proud to have been shortlisted for Howard League awards.

“It’s testament to the hard work and innovation of our teams across the force, in particular working with young people, improving their aspirations and supporting our communities.”