Assistant PCC Ashley Bertie with Sophie Wilson and Ruw Shears from Sova and Inspector Colin Barnes from West Midlands Police
Young people who are at risk of offending in Birmingham and Solihull are to be steered away from a life of crime by new Youth Intervention Workers (YIWs).
Thanks in part to funding from West Midlands PCC, six YIWs will work with West Midlands Police to help young people get into employment, education or training.
The number of Youth Intervention Workers is then set to double in the spring.
They are part of the £50 million Youth Promise Plus scheme, which aims to see more than 16,000 young people aged between 15 to 29 get back on the right track. Youth Promise Plus is backed by local councils, Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership, Transport for West Midlands, The Prince’s Trust and West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, who has put £1 million into the pot.
The YIWs were introduced at a launch event in Birmingham yesterday (FEB 14). They are:
- Nicole Woodcock for Bournville
- Sundeep Bassi for Sutton Coldfield
- Amy Hall for Stechford
- Shamuil Rahman for Chelmsley Wood
- Sundeep Saina and Paul Moss for Handsworth
Police officers who come into contact with young people with complex needs will refer them on to the YIWs, who will dedicate months to supporting them and turning their lives around for the better.
West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson said: “These Youth Intervention Workers will do vital work in supporting young people who may feel as if their lives are spiralling out of control.
“They will carry out key prevention work to ensure the West Midlands has fewer criminals and, more importantly, fewer victims.
“The new workers will specialise in working through whatever issues the young people may have to get them into employment, education or training.
“I am happy to support Youth Promise Plus to the tune of £1 million.”
Inspector Paul Foster from Solihull’s Offender Management Team added: “The new YIWs will become an integral part of West Midlands Police’s Local Offender Management Units.
“They will be a vital link between the police and young people who have a variety of complex needs or issues that put them at risk of offending.
“This is all about prevention: by getting these young people into employment, education or training there will be fewer crimes, less harm and fewer victims.”
Assistant PCC Ashely Bertie added: “The YIWs will provide a lasting legacy in Birmingham. They will be the glue that holds so much of our work with young people together.”
- The Birmingham and Solihull Youth Promise Plus project is supported by £16.8 million of funding from the European Social Fund and up to £16.8m of Youth Employment Initiative funding as part of the 2014-2020 European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme in England.
- The Department for Work and Pensions is the Managing Authority for the England European Social Fund programme and the Youth Employment Initiative funds.
- Established by the European Union, European Social Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support skills development, employment and job creation, social inclusion and local community regenerations, and the Youth Employment Initiative is additional EU funding for some areas of Europe where extra support is needed to support young people into employment, education and training. For more information visit www.gov.uk/european-growth-funding
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