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Child-centred policing sees arrests fall by 70 per cent

09 Dec 2019

Child-centred policing sees arrests fall by 70 per cent: Chatting.20443.14859

Arrests of children in England and Wales have fallen by more than 70 per cent in the past eight years, according to figures gathered by the Howard League for Penal Reform.

Data from more than 40 police forces show 70,078 arrests of individuals aged 17 and under in 2018, down from 250,000 in 2010.

In 2015, the National Police Chiefs’ Council published a new three-year Strategy for the Policing of Children and Young People, which champions a child-centred approach and lists the “detention, custody and criminalisation” of young people as a priority area.

National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for Children and Young People, Chief Constable Olivia Pinkney said:

"The continued drop in child arrests across the country is welcome. While there will always be situations in which arrest is the best option to keep the public safe, police forces are continuing to work to decrease this wherever possible.

“In line with our national child centred policing strategy we aim to avoid unnecessarily criminalising children and young people. 

“Forces have developed alternative outcomes for offending by children and young people in order to take a restorative approach, aimed to prevent further offences being committed.”

The full report on Child arrests in England and Wales 2018 can be read on the Howard League website.

Chief Constable Olivia Pinkney has previous blogged about the need to stop unnecessarily criminalising children, and the launch of the national protocol, which will assist in doing just that.