Leeds Youth Offending Service awarded quality mark for restorative justice

Leeds Youth Offending Service has been recognised for its high quality work in restorative justice at a Royal ceremony.

The Youth Offending Service (a multi-agency service within Leeds City Council) is one of the first organisations in the UK to receive a new quality mark from the Restorative Justice Council.

Representatives from Leeds Youth Offending Service received their award from HRH The Princess Royal at the Restorative Justice Council’s Annual General Meeting.

Restorative processes bring those harmed by crime or conflict into communication with those responsible for the harm, enabling everyone affected by a particular incident to play a part in repairing the harm and finding a positive way forward. Restorative processes are being increasingly used in a wide range of settings including criminal justice, schools, care homes, local authorities, prisons and communities.

The Restorative Service Quality Mark (RSQM) requires organisations to show that they are consistently meeting six Restorative Service Standards. Following a rigorous assessment process, Leeds YOS has demonstrated that it meets the standards, and will now hold the prestigious quality mark.

Councillor Judith Blake, executive member responsible for children’s services said:

“Our Youth Offending Service has a great track record for providing excellent restorative practice opportunities for young people involved with the service, so it is fantastic that this great work has been recognised with this quality mark.

“In Leeds we are committed to making sure young offenders take responsibility for what they have done, and are encouraged to make amends to the society they have offended against.

“Restorative practice helps them understand the real impact of their actions, helps them take responsibility and make amends.”

Jemma Jewkes, the RJC’s head of standards and professional services, said:

“Earlier this year, the Restorative Justice Council put out a call for services to take part in a test phase of the Restorative Service Quality Mark. The response was overwhelmingly positive, and Leeds Youth Offending Service was one of the organisations selected to participate.

“All the organisations taking part understand the importance of quality – delivering to national standards ensures that people can feel safe and confident about the service they are receiving. They have all worked incredibly hard, and we’re very proud of the successful applicants.

“It’s been a real privilege to visit all of the test sites and see first-hand some of the amazing work that’s being done.”

Following the successful completion of the test phase, the Restorative Service Quality Mark is expected to be launched nationally later in 2013.

Note to editors

• The Restorative Justice Council (RJC) provides a national voice, and quality assurance for restorative practice through the criminal justice system, schools and care.

The Restorative Service Quality Mark is backed by the Ministry of Justice. For further information on the Quality Mark please contact the RJC on 0207 831 5700 or email Jemma Jewkes at jemma@restorativejustice.org.uk


For media enquiries, please contact:

Emma Whittell, Leeds City Council press office, on (0113) 2474713

Email: emma.whittell@leeds.gov.uk