The Minister of State with special responsibility for Law Reform, Youth Justice and Immigration, James Browne TD, today launched the “Developing Effective Relationships Between Youth Justice Workers and Young People” report during a visit to the University of Limerick.
Speaking at the launch of the report, Minister Browne said, “I am delighted to launch this report, which presents the up-to-date scientific evidence of how to build purposeful relationships between youth justice workers and young people. I would like to sincerely thank the lead author Deirdre Fullerton, and her supporting team Dr John Bamber and Dr Sean Redmond for such an accessible and compelling report.”
The report is the seventh in a series of reports completed by the Research Evidence into Policy, Programmes and Practice (REPPP) project in the School of Law in the University of Limerick. REPPP works in strategic collaboration with the Department of Justice to improve the evidence base for youth crime policymaking, and this report will inform the implementation of the new Youth Justice Strategy.
Minister Browne added, “We should look to professional relationships not as an appealing add-on to youth justice policy, but the main venue where change takes place and the engine that drives positive youth justice policy outcomes.
“If we see relationships in youth justice settings in this way; trust in the potential of front line practitioners to judiciously encourage, nudge and prompt young people toward positive behaviour change, then understanding the science that underpins the best versions of relationships is an obvious next step for a youth justice system like ours which seeks to continually improve.”
The Minister also visited Henry Street Garda station where he was briefed by Gardaí on the many community initiatives being undertaken in Limerick City. The Minister also visited the Moyross Garda Youth Diversion Project to hear first-hand about the valuable interventions undertaken by the Project, such as the successful initiative on scramblers and the equine education and therapeutic programme.