Secure care

Transitions


Transitions are a time of insecurity, disorientation and stress, and leaving care can be equally as difficult as entering (Duncalf, 2010; Scottish Government, 2011). Gough (2016, p.19) “found that for too many young people, the preparation and support they receive as they move on from the secure care setting is disproportionate to the secure care placement, i.e. inadequate”. However, “the amount and availability of support networks that each young person has is integral to their successful exit from secure care or custody” (Scottish Government, 2011, p.19).

Planning for a child or young person’s exit from secure care and reintegration to their community should start at the point of their stay in secure care and must include children, young people and their families. Such preparation and inclusion is vital to successful transitions (Gough, 2016).

Secure unit staff, the Lead Professional and the wider support team are responsible for preparing the child or young person for successful transition as set out in the Child's Plan.

Mobility planning

Mobility involves testing the child or young person’s ability to begin to make the transition from secure care. Prior to mobility a transition risk assessment and risk management plan will assess whether they can commence with mobility, identify any concerns and detail how these will be managed. The plan will be agreed with unit staff, Lead Professional and the child or young person (the Children and Young Person’s (CYP) Placement Manager will be involved if the young person is sentenced under section 205(2) or section 208 Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995 - see guidance for further details on mobility in these cases). The plan will consist of:

Prior to mobility a transition risk assessment and risk management plan will assess whether the young person can commence with mobility, identify any concerns and detail how these will be managed.

Post-release plans

Children and young people may be released from secure care on their:

It is the responsibility of the Lead Professional to ensure post-release community supports as detailed in the Child’s Plan are in place (Scottish Government, 2011).

All children and young people should have a review meeting prior to their return to the community.

For children who remain subject to Compulsory Supervision Orders (CSOs), plans should be reviewed regularly as detailed in concurrent orders and statutory requirements for review of secure care authorisations via the Children’s Hearings System

Research (see resources below) indicates that post-release plans and supports must be:

These key characteristics can be summarised as plans and supports being constructive; co-created; customised; consistent; and coordinated (Beyond Youth Custody, 2017).

Plans must also pay particular attention to:

Resources for this page