Youth leaders and cross party MPs urge the Government

A few days ago the Children and Young People Now website published a very significant piece under the headline TREAT CRIMINAL EXPLOITATION OF YOUNG PEOPLE AS A ‘NATIONAL THREAT’, CAMPAIGNERS URGE and they go on to write that “Youth justice leaders and cross-party MPs have urged the government to treat youth violence and criminal exploitation of young people as a “national threat” during an event in parliament.” The article can be obtained from here and it includes the comment that “Panellists included Steve Chalke, founder of Oasis Charitable Trust, police and crime commissioner for Northumbria Kim McGuinness, and Simon Rotherham, deputy lead for the children and young people at the National Police Chiefs Council.” As it happens I have had the privilege of meeting Steve Chalke on a number of times in the past. The article also includes a link to a piece in the Commission Young Lives website and the page is here. That document begins with


Final report from Anne Longfield’s Commission on Young Lives calls on Government to lead the fight back through ‘Sure Start Plus’, a national plan to prevent teenagers becoming involved in criminal exploitation, gangs, and serious violence

Anne Longfield CBE, Chair of the Commission on Young Lives, is today publishing her year-long Commission’s final report, ‘Hidden in Plain Sight: A national plan of action to support vulnerable teenagers to succeed and to protect them from adversity, exploitation and harm’.

The Commission’s report proposes a new ‘Sure Start Plus for Teenagers’ network of intervention and support as the centrepiece of a wide range of recommendations to government, the police, schools, and others to tackle the deep-rooted problems in the children’s social care, education, family support, children’s mental health, and criminal justice systems.

Another location that focuses on this theme is this discussion which took place a few days ago on 26th January in the House of Lords which was sourced by Baroness Armstrong of Hill Top who was Hilary Armstrong and a Labour MP from 1987 to 2010 in Durham and her first few words are

That this House takes note of the report by the Commission on Young Lives, Hidden in Plain Sight, published on 4 November 2022, and the life chances and educational prospects of vulnerable teenagers. My Lords, at the end of last year, the Commission on Young Lives, chaired by the former Children’s Commissioner, Anne Longfield, published its final report. The commission and Anne are to be congratulated on this important piece of work, which challenges us all. The commission was launched in 2021 to devise a new and affordable national system of support to prevent crisis and improve the life chances of young people at risk of criminal exploitation, serious violence or getting into trouble with the law. The panel of commissioners included experts in the education system, children’s mental health, youth work, policing and crime, charities and organisations that work closely with children at risk of harm. They were people who know about these things and know how to get things done.

One of the people involved in that debate is Paul Butler the Bishop of Durham who included these words

I also thank the noble Baroness, Lady Armstrong, for securing this debate. It is always lovely to share something with someone else from this part of the north-east of England. I congratulate Anne Longfield on the report, Hidden in Plain Sight. As the Commission on Young Lives’ report demonstrates, young people falling vulnerable to violence and exploitation and entering the criminal justice system is not an issue that is shrinking, nor one that could possibly be ignored. The effects of this problem are widespread, impacting not only the lives and futures of the young people themselves but the prosperity and security of our whole country. Such an issue cannot be resolved through sticking plasters or short-term solutions; it is instead vital that we examine and address the root causes and respond with long-term solutions.

We clearly need our local MPs to respond to this theme and hopefully they will respond to the Charities in our area here in Sussex.

About ianchisnall

I am passionate about the need for public policies to be made accessible to everyone, especially those who want to improve the wellbeing of their communities. I am particularly interested in issues related to crime and policing as well as health services and strategic planning.
This entry was posted in Community Safety, Education, Parliament and Democracy, Youth Issues and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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