Young People with Anti-Social Behaviours: Practical Resources for Professionals

Young People with Anti-Social Behaviours: Practical Resources for Professionals

Young People with Anti-Social Behaviours: Practical Resources for Professionals

Young People with Anti-Social Behaviours: Practical Resources for Professionals


The media today suggests that many young people are becoming involved in anti-social behaviour. But increasing amounts of legislation and ASBOs neither seem to have addressed the real issues nor solved the problem, and may simply add to the frustrations of all those involved.

Kathy Hampson's comprehensive guide is based on up-to-date, grass-roots experience of working with young people with anti-social behaviour. Including ready-to-use, photocopiable resources suitable for a wide variety of settings, it examines the background to these highly topical issues, enabling the reader to contextualise and better identify with the problems faced by the young people they work with. The easy-to-reproduce, tried-and-tested exercises:

  • are for use with individuals or groups
  • address the issues involved in offending behaviour
  • can be easily modified to cater for a range of learning styles, abilities and maturity, (and shows how you can identify which exercises suit which young people)
  • include discussion scenarios, worksheets, cartoons, card games and creative activities
  • can be used to dissuade young people from getting involved in anti-social behaviour, and to enable them to make better decisions

The book includes an appraisal of current research on the issues surrounding anti-social behaviour and, in particular, risk factors that may be involved 'behind the scenes' in young people's lives. A section on working with parents helps them to support their children, improve their parenting skills and to know where, and how, to ask for help.

This is an essential resource offering constructive, practical solutions to anti-social behaviour in young people between the ages of 10 and 18. It will be invaluable for those working professionally or voluntarily in schools, with youth groups, youth offending teams, youth inclusion projects, faith groups, anti-social behaviour teams, or for anyone whose work offers the opportunity, or requires them, to challenge anti-social and offending behaviour.


The system for youth justice in England and Wales (Scotland has a different system, which will be touched on later) has constantly evolved through a number of different pieces of legislation, the latest of which is the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008.

Youth Offending Teams (YOTs) were set up through the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 with the purpose of preventing offending and re-offending by young people under the age of 18 (and over 10, which is now deemed as the age at which young people can be held criminally responsible for their actions), whilst also keeping in view the welfare of young people, as detailed in the various Children Acts since 1933. the Youth Justice Board oversees the work of the individual area-based YOTs. These teams are run differently in different areas, but always incorporate staff from five different backgrounds: the police, the health service, probation, social care, and education. This multi-agency approach is designed to meet all the needs and risk factors associated with their offending, as identified by practitioners.

Previously when young people were in trouble with the police, repeated cautions were used, but this caused doubts about whether this was effective. Now, when police want to charge young people with an offence, they can issue a Reprimand as a first response (except for very serious offences). the second time a young person is arrested and charged by the police, they can offer a Final Warning (again depending on the seriousness). If the Final Warning is not accepted by the young person, then the police may proceed to a prosecution.

The next offence is always taken to court, if there is enough evidence. For young people pleading guilty, the court only has two options: to give a Referral Order, or custody. Clearly this choice depends on the seriousness of the offence and a report, called a pre-sentence report, will be prepared by the yot in order to assess this. If the young person pleads not guilty, then the matter will be taken to trial, which cannot then result in a Referral Order, but could incur a Youth Rehabilitation Order (YRO), discussed later. Young people can receive up to two Referral Orders, but a second is at the discretion of the court, which may want to impose a different order at this stage. Young people can also receive an extension of their Referral Order if they appear before the court again whilst one is already in place, but this can only happen once, and can only result in an order of a maximum of 12 months. When a young person . . .

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