CYCJ – a stakeholder’s perspective

The Centre for Youth & Criminal Justice (CYCJ) has shared the results of its latest stakeholder consultation exercise.

The annual survey consulted the views of three key groups: policy makers and the youth justice workforce, community councils, and children and young people across Scotland.

Results were shared through a series of activities with pupils at schools in Irvine and Dumfries & Galloway and compiled in a report. This is accompanied by a poster which gives a visual overview of responses from community councils and young people.

Claire Lightowler, Director of CYCJ, says: “We are committed to engagement, connection and participation with our stakeholders, and ensuring that we are able to meet the emerging needs and priorities of the people we work with and for.  One of the ways we achieve this is a regular stakeholder consultation exercise that allows us to benchmark progress, as well as to seek views, perceptions and experiences. The response this year was very satisfying, and we are very grateful to everyone who took the time to complete it.”

Findings from the workforce were positive, with appreciation for a broader range of contact by the Centre, and increased use of resources such as the website, e-bulletins and themed information sheets/briefing papers. Training and events were described as ‘inspiring’ and ‘relevant’, and CYCJ staff were praised for being friendly and approachable.

Following this, some improvements have already been implemented by the Centre. This includes the introduction of the CYCJ Roadshow, a more specialised approach that sees the team travel across Scotland to deliver tailored training to meet local needs. Feedback from roadshows held so far has been extremely positive.

Responses from the 235 community councils and 429 young people who completed the survey showed interesting similarities in perceptions of youth crime. Many agreed that families and communities need to be part of the solution to criminal behaviour, with acknowledgment from both groups that young people end up offending as a result of peer pressure, and a lack of activities and support.

“We wanted to thank the young people who responded and let them know that their views were being heard and acted upon – which is why we chose to engage directly with pupils,” explains CYCJ’s Research Lead Nina Vaswani, who led on the stakeholder consultation. “The response we received was extremely positive, and we were so impressed at the insight, understanding and maturity that young people showed when reflecting on youth justice issues.  We are confident that the future looks good if these are the young people that will one day be in charge!”

The findings from the survey have been shared with the Scottish Government, and used to create a workplan that will help CYCJ to support practice and policy developments in youth justice over the coming 12 months.

Download CYCJ: A Stakeholder’s Perspective.

Download the Youth Crime poster.

As a follow up, CYCJ will host an event in May 2015 as part of Engage with Strathclyde Week, to bring communities and young people who have previously been involved in offending together to share the findings, best practice and think about a shared way forward for community engagement. Find out more and register here.



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Children's and Young People's Centre for Justice
University of Strathclyde
Lord Hope Building, Level 6
141 St. James Road Glasgow G4 0LT

(0141) 444 8622

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