Programmes > Accommodation
Offending Team (YOT) continues to do well in terms
of accommodation provision throughout the Kirklees
area. 90?% of young people who are on orders to YOT
are adequately accommodated in suitable
accommodation. The Youth Justice Board target is
96%. The remainder of young people 4% are usually
those who go unreported or are not picked up through
the assessment process. These are the most difficult
to engage group of young people. Even though we can
be proud of what we achieve for young people who
have accommodation needs we are always looking at
improving the service we provide.
Kirklees Housing Options Support Services have
followed the guidelines set out by central
government that young people in need of temporary
accommodation should not be placed in Bed &
Breakfast provision. This should therefore reduce
the percentage rate of young people being placed in
unsuitable accommodation. This approach has resulted
in young people being offered tenancies by Housing
providers and not temporary accommodation. This has
given our young people real opportunities to succeed
in their tenancies. The emerging trend within HOSS
is to make attempts at resolving family conflict
with a view to young people staying with parents and
family. The YOT firmly believe that this is by far
the best placement for them.
House of Lords Ruling
Accommodation for Lone 16/17 year old Children
The ruling confirmed
the Department’s view that local authorities should
presume that any lone, homeless child should be
provided with accommodation and under section 20 of
the Children Act 1989 unless the child is not in the
local authority’s judgment (based on an initial
screening assessment), a child “in need”. In nearly
all cases the impact of a child being homeless and
their parents being unable to provide them with
suitable accommodation or care would result in such
significant challenges to the child’s welfare, that
the child will be a child “in need”. Where the
criteria for section 20 have been met children’s
services do not have discretion to choose to use
section 17 powers instead to provide accommodation.
The effect of providing accommodation under section
20 is of course that the child becomes “looked
after” within the meaning of section 22 of the Act.
Kirklees YOT also work in partnership with a private landlord who provides a self contained tenancy. This resource is used to accommodate young people who are leaving custody with accommodation needs.
Kirklees YOT have in place a Service Level Agreement
with a local provider (Foundation
Housing) to provide support for up to 10 bed
spaces dedicated to YOT clients throughout North and
The support package is an intense support plan that
has been designed to meet the individuals’ support
Kirklees YOT has secured funding for high level
support for up to 10 young people who are on orders
to the YOT. Another local provider (Stonham
Housing) were successful in making a bid to
Supporting People for funding for two full-time
support workers who will provide intensive support
for young people in their own tenancies. We have
experienced real difficulties with young people
failing in their accommodation due to the lack of
intensive support. We hope to evaluate this service
over the next year.
Kirklees YOT are now
in a privileged position to have a senior manager
from Kirklees Neighbourhood Housing being
represented on the YOT management board this is a
major step forward which will have an influential
outcome as to how both organisations can challenge
barriers YOT service users encounter.
We are also in a position to have a YOT manager representing YOT on the West Yorkshire Strategic Housing Partnership Board.
Accommodation officer also attends the Kirklees
homelessness forum advocating on behalf YOT. He also
attends the Multi Agency Resource Panel meetings (MARP).
The meetings are chaired by the manager of Housing
Options Support Services and the panel is made up of
a range of agencies that aims to address the needs
of individual young people that have complex issues
that prevent them from accessing tenancies.