Young offenders institutions

Admission process

“Sixteen and 17 year olds moving into custody are likely to be particularly troubled, disadvantaged and vulnerable. Failing to meet their needs as they move from the community to custody can lead to a lifetime of offending behaviour”

(Scottish Government, 2011, p.29)

On arrival, Scottish Prison Service (SPS) staff should ensure the child or young person:

The child or young person may also be allowed to make a telephone call at the expense of the SPS.

Issues that have been highlighted will be recorded and promptly followed up.

Notification of the local authority

For children and young people aged under 18, the SPS will notify via email the Whole System Approach Lead in the local authority where the young person ordinarily resides that the child or young person is in custody. The WSA Lead should share this information with the Lead Professional who should:


A child or young person’s reception into custody may also be a frightening and concerning time for families.

It is important family members are supported during this period. Families Outside, YOI family contact officers and the resources below can provide help and answer questions.

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