Report on Woodlands JJC raises concerns – Dr Paula Rodgers

Include Youth spokesperson on Youth Justice, Dr Paula Rodgers, has stated that today’s report by the Criminal Justice Inspectorate into Woodlands Juvenile Justice Centre raises numerous concerns about as to how the centre is being utilised within the overall criminal justice system. 

Speaking today Dr Rodgers said:

“While Include Youth acknowledges, and indeed commends the child centred ethos at the Woodlands JJC we have equally raised numerous concerns regarding how the centre is utilised by the overall criminal justice system. 

“The report by the Criminal Justice Inspectorate into Woodlands is reinforces these concerns.

“There are concerns that the over three quarters of those held at the centre are from a Catholic background. This needs to be investigated further and answers produced as to why this is the case. We also remain concerned that almost 40% of those detained are looked after children. CJINI state that the proportion of children from a care background detained has increased since their last inspection in 2015.

“Alongside this it remains the case that the inappropriate use of Woodlands, as to what can only be described as a custody suite for young people, is concerning. The fact that 50 percent of young people admitted under PACE are released within 24 hours is evidence of this. This needs to change as a matter of urgency.  

“In 2011 the Criminal Justice review outlined the need for alternative accommodation and yet we are still waiting to see this implemented.

“Until this is enacted young people will continue to be processed in a manner that is not practical or proportionate and will continue to be failed or scarred by the process.”