New guide for practitioners sets out how young people can be helped to cope with release from custody
22 August 2016 | Tagged with the theme: Transition to community
“… when I came out, my head was all over the place. [Due to the nature of my offence] I lost out on a lot of stuff, family and stuff … I just isolated myself … I moved back into my room at my auntie’s and just locked my door… I just sat there… it was just normal: go to your room, lock the door… I didn’t leave the house properly, unless I had to go probation, for about two weeks.”
Today, Beyond Youth Custody has published a practitioner’s guide – ‘Custody to community: supporting young people to cope with release’ – about the way that young people experience the transition back into the community. Our previous research on this subject found the early days to weeks following release can be an overwhelmingly stressful experience for young people. While some navigate this period relatively smoothly, the dominant theme is that young people find it hard to cope, and feel disorientated when adjusting to life in the community. This relates to adjustments to the sudden change in life regime, environment and the renegotiation of relationships.
The guide released today builds on these findings and identifies recommendations for practitioners to ease the transition process by:
- Acknowledging the disorientation and anxieties arising at the point of release from custody
- Highlighting the issues which may affect resettlement planning, engagement and sentence enforcement (and hence ‘success’)
- Offering practitioners examples of promising practice which may support their work with young people