The number of children arrested by police in north Wales has halved in 5 years
Arrests of children in north Wales have fallen by 54 per cent in the last five years.
The fall follows a successful campaign by the Howard League for Penal Reform to keep as many boys and girls as possible out of the criminal justice system.
Figures published by the charity today reveal that, during 2015, police in north Wales made 1577 arrests of boys and girls aged 17 and under.
And although the number of those arrested in 2015 has shown a slight increase of 33 versus 2014, the five year comparison shows a huge decrease in the number of children arrested in the region – down by over 1800.
The figures mirror those across all forces in Wales and England where numbers have fallen every year since 2010.
Many forces have reviewed their arrest procedures and policies after the Howard League’s positive engagement with them.
[miptheme_quote author=”Frances Crook, Chief Executive of the Howard League” style=”boxquote text-left”]The Howard League is proud to have played its part in a significant change to the policing and life chances of children.[/miptheme_quote]
Thirty-four forces brought down their number of child arrests by more than half, including 10 who achieved reductions of more than 70 per cent.
The most successful force in the country was Humberside Police, which recorded a 77 per cent drop in the number of arrests.
There were 874 arrests of primary-age children (10- and 11-year-olds) in 2015, a reduction of 19 per cent from the previous year.
Frances Crook, Chief Executive of the Howard League for Penal Reform, said:
“I applaud the police for their success in reducing child arrests. The Howard League is proud to have played its part in a significant change to the policing and life chances of children.
“It is particularly gratifying that the reduction in child arrests matches the reduction in custody for children, and it is no coincidence.
Stemmed the flow
We have stemmed the flow of children into the justice system and the consequential downward spiral into crime and custody.”
The statistics published by the Howard League today shows how reducing the number of children entering the system has stemmed the flow of children into custody.
Between 2010 and 2015, the number of children in prison in England and Wales fell by 58 per cent – decreasing at about the same rate as child arrests.
[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_line_chart style=”custom” x_values=”2010; 2011; 2012; 2013; 2014; 2015; ” values=”%5B%7B%22title%22%3A%22North%20Wales%20Police%22%2C%22y_values%22%3A%223420%3B%202596%3B%202022%3B%201780%3B%201554%3B%201577%22%2C%22color%22%3A%22black%22%2C%22custom_color%22%3A%22rgba(0%2C26%2C112%2C0.89)%22%7D%5D” animation=”easeOutSine”][vc_column_text]Arrests of girls are falling at a faster rate than arrests of boys.
Police recorded a 63 per cent drop in girls’ arrests between 2010 and 2015, and the number of girls in prison decreased by the same proportion.
The Howard League says the fall in arrests can be attributed to better use of resources to solve problems, the removal of national targets, improved staff training, and support from communities.
Theres still more work to be done says the Howard League, like North Wales Police eleven other forces recorded an increase in child arrests last year and, although improvements have been made, arrests remain all too common – a child was arrested every five minutes in England and Wales in 2015.
Chief Constable Olivia Pinkney, the National Police Chiefs’ Council Lead for Children and Young People, said:
“The 58 percent reduction (nationally) is really good news and shows what we can do when we focus on intervening early and preventing harm before it happens. I would like to thank our officers, staff, volunteers and policing partners across the country for their hard work so far. Children are children first and should never be criminalised unnecessarily.”[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row] Spotted something? Got a story? Send a Facebook Message | A direct message on Twitter | Email: News@Deeside.com