Liberal Democrats announce plans to extend remit of Youth Justice System to 21

The 2015 Liberal Democrat Manifesto has announced plans to: “Extend the role of the Youth Justice Board to all offenders aged under 21, give them the power to commission mental health services and devolve youth custody budgets to Local Authorities”.


This move would bring England and Wales in line with the majority of European countries, as recent T2A research with the University of Greifswald revealed.


Other plans announced by the Lib Dems include:


  • Create a Women’s Justice Board, modelled on the Youth Justice Board, to improve rehabilitation of female offenders.
  • Reform prisons so they become places of work, rehabilitation and learning, with offenders receiving an education and skills assessment within one week, starting a relevant course and programme of support within one month and able to complete courses on release.
  • Provide experts in courts and police stations to identify where mental health or a drug problem is behind an offender’s behaviour so they can be dealt with in a way that is appropriate. We will pilot US-style drug and alcohol courts.