HC Deb 15 December 1997 vol 303 c11W
Mr. Clappison

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the youth action groups promoted by Crime Concern. [20294]

Mr. Michael

This Government consider the Youth Action Initiative to be an excellent model of how to involve young people in dealing with issues of disorder and anti-social behaviour which this Government are determined to tackle. We strongly support the wider expansion of the initiatives.

Youth Action Group is encouraged to tackle problems of relevance to young people, such as graffiti, vandalism, bullying in schools, personal safety and substance abuse. The best of such Groups have an impact, not only on their schools, but on the wider community. Youth Action Groups provide young people with an opportunity to be part of the solution to crime and not just part of the problem. The remarkable achievements demonstrated by winners of the Prudential Youth Action Awards in recent years demonstrate the potential of young people when given that opportunity. I am very keen to ensure that the work of the Youth Action Groups is linked closely to that of the new statutory partnerships for preventing crime and disorder which will be established once the Crime and Disorder Bill takes effect. I am currently looking at ways in which this objective can be achieved.