MOST young people never enter into criminal or anti-social behaviour but for some there is the potential to turn to crime.
The Safer Solihull Partnership works to ensure the borough’s children and young people remain in education, off the streets and away from a life of crime.
Often there are a collection of problems that lead to a young person regularly misbehaving; these include a lack of education, poor family relationships, having family members or peers who have offended, and drug and alcohol misuse.
Instead of just giving a criminal record, Safer Solihull tries to solve the problems that cause a young person to offend.
There are schemes in place which provide short-term support for potential young offenders.
Teams of experts draw up individual plans for a young person, which help them keep away from situations or people that could lead them to become involved in crime and anti-social behaviour.
This could include enrolling them in sports activities and providing extra help at school. It could also involve putting the family in touch with any services they may need, such as mental health and substance misuse services.
For those who have already taken part in anti-social behaviour, there is Solihull Community Housing’s Anti-Social Behaviour team.
The team work with young people and their family to try to stop further anti-social behaviour.
One method used is Parental Contracts for the parents and Acceptable Behaviour Contracts for the young person.
Under these the parent and child sign up to standards of behaviour, such as attending school regularly or not socialising with certain people who could get them into trouble.
Solihull Police Chief Superintendent Carl Foulkes said: “When dealing with youth crime we have to assess each case individually.
“This could involve giving a verbal warning and the child never coming to our notice again, but for others, it could involve carrying out further work to prevent their behaviour from escalating.
“For these young people, the partnership offers tailored support for them and their family to help change the young person’s behaviour before it spirals out of control.
“These initiatives have been developed to give a high level of co-ordinated support and in general are very successful.”