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Last Updated: Sunday, 23 April 2006, 09:45 GMT 10:45 UK
Grant awarded to cut youth crime
Staffordshire's Youth Offending Service (SYOS) is to recruit a specialist team to work with young people at risk of crime and anti-social behaviour.

It follows a 636,111 Youth Justice Board for England and Wales grant. The board's main purpose is to cut youth crime across England and Wales.

The prevention workers will operate at a grass roots level in each of the county's eight districts and boroughs.

They will work with the three existing Youth Crime Prevention Co-ordinators.

The prevention workers will address issues that could lead a young person into a life of crime and anti-social behaviour.

'Effective approach'

This can include alcohol and drug problems, and difficulties at school and at home.

County Councillor Robert Simpson, Staffordshire cabinet member for Children and Lifelong Learning, said: "The idea is to engage young people who, for several reasons, might be on the brink of participating in anti-social behaviour or crime.

"By preventing them from stepping onto that ladder, we hope to significantly alter their attitudes and ideally alter the course of their life."

Sharon Moore, head of Staffordshire YOS, said: "There is lots of evidence to show that this preventative approach is effective and has real long term benefits for communities.

"Rather than trying to break a cycle which is already in place, preventative action aspires to stop people being drawn into crime."

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