Gweres Tus Yowynk Adolescent Service (incorporating Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly Youth Offending Service)

The Gweres Tus Yowynk (GTY) Adolescent Service is a partnership between the Youth Offending Service (YOS) and the adolescent service within Children and Family Services. Gweres Tus Yowynk is Cornish for ‘helping young people’ and was chosen as a name in collaboration with young people.

This intervention is typically for a period of three to six months, working closely with multi-agency partners. It is a non-statutory service so families' involvement is voluntary. Priority is given to working with young people who are at risk of entering care, who may be known to children's social care but are not currently allocated to a social care team and who exhibit the following risks:

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  • are in an unplanned or emergency admission to care, particularly those
  • occurring out of hours and those who may have had a past admission to care
  • may be in unstable arrangements e.g. ’sofa surfing’
  • where there is evidence of the following risks:
    • Going missing from home
    • Chronic and serious non-school attendance, exclusion and part time
    • timetables
    • Antisocial behaviours
    • Offending
    • Self-harming
    • Alcohol and substance misuse
    • Child sexual exploitation

Functional Family Therapy (FFT) was introduced as part of the GTY service. It is delivered to young people receiving a service from GTY, as well as to young people receiving a service from other social care teams within the council.

FFT is based on the assumption that every family member's behaviour serves an adaptive function within the family. The aim of FFT practitioners is to help families understand the reasons behind their behaviour so that they are in a better position to change them. Practitioners need to form a positive alliance with each family member to keep them engaged and motivated to change.

The Youth Offending Service continues to be a multi agency partnership between:

  • Cornwall Council
  • Cornwall Foundation Trust
  • Devon and Cornwall Constabulary
  • Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group (NHS Kernow)
  • The Council for the Isles of Scilly
  • The National Probation Service
  • The National Youth Justice Board

It is given specific strategic guidance by the local Youth Justice Board comprising of a Chief Officer who sits as the Chair of the Board and a group of the Senior Officers of the partner agencies involved. Established by the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 the Youth Offending Service is responsible for the delivery or commissioning of statutory youth justice services and works in partnership with other services and organisations with the aim of preventing offending and re-offending by children and young people aged 10–17 years.

The Youth Offending Service is subject to three national key priority and performance indicators reported on quarterly to the National Youth Justice Board.  These are:

  • Reducing the numbers of young people entering the criminal justice system for the first time (FTEs)
  • Reducing reoffending
  • Reducing the use of custody

The Youth Offending Service also has the statutory responsibility to provide an Appropriate Adult Service for children and young people aged between 10-17 years in police custody.

Gweres Tus Yowynk (GTY) sits within the Children and Family Service of the Children, Family and Adults Directorate. The GTY service manager reports directly to Head of Service Children in Care and Care Leavers and the team managers report directly to the Service Manager. The Service Manager continues to sit on the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Youth Justice Board and remains the ‘outward facing’ contact for youth justice both locally and nationally.

Youth Offending referral routes:

  • Police - Out of Court Disposals (OOCD) – Police decision in combination with YOS advice takes the form of voluntary interventions with Community Resolutions and Youth Cautions and mandatory interventions with Youth Conditional Cautions (failure to comply results in charge to court)
  • Youth Courts and Crown Courts – statutory court orders including Referral Orders, Youth Rehabilitation Orders (both community orders) and Detention and Training Orders (custodial sentence). They will also order YOS to complete court reports to assist in sentencing
  • Anti-social behaviour (ASB) route - police referrals often picked up from attendance at the ASB meetings held across the county
  • Prevention referrals (when a young person is at risk of becoming involved in either anti-social behaviour or offending behaviour) received from Early Help Hub, Early Intervention Team or the Multi Agency Referral Unit (MARU)

View the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Youth Justice Plan 2016-2017