Blackpool's youth offending teams funding is cut by half since 2010

Youth offending teams have had funding cut by 51 per cent
Youth offending teams have had funding cut by 51 per cent
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Blackpool’s youth offending teams have had their funding slashed by 51 per cent in less than 10 years, it is claimed.

Blackpool’s youth offending teams have had their funding slashed by 51 per cent in less than 10 years, it is claimed.

Figures uncovered by the Labour Party show that since 2010, Blackpool’s youth offending team’s funding has been cut by £339,523, meaning cuts of 51 per cent.

Across Lancashire County Council the cuts have totalled £1.19million.

Nationally, the Government has slashed central government funding for youth offending teams by over half from £145m in 2010/11 to £71m in 2017/18.

Labour’s Shadow Justice Secretary Richard Burgon forced the government to release the statistics after he demanded that the Justice Department reveal the value of central government grants given to Youth Offending Teams for each local authority area since the coalition between theConservatives and the Liberal Democrats was formed.

Blackpool South MP, Gordon Marsden MP said: “These figures are very worrying – but part and parcel of the Tory-led Government’s failure since 2010 to properly fund youth services, both locally and nationally.

“They have also failed to fund and establish a proper national careers service.

“All these are factors which have led to a dissatisfaction and lack of opportunities for young people.”

In December, a report into Blackpool’s Youth Offending Team branded the council-run department as ‘inadequate’.

An inspection by HM Inspectorate of Probation into the department found a “difficult set of circumstances and widespread poor practice.”

The report said the team was inadequate or requires improvement in all areas.

It also found the resort has three of the most deprived areas in the country and its 13 privately run children’s homes was a “disproportionately large number” for a small authority.

Chris Webb, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Blackpool North and Cleveleys, said: “Our town benefits so much from their youth offending teams. They do so much good work in stopping young people committing crime or becoming victims of crime.

“It was completely unacceptable for the Tories and, in coalition, the Lib Dems to cut this funding. But it is appalling that, with youth violence rising, the government is still failing to prioritise funding for this essential service – with below-inflation real terms cuts year after year.

“You can’t keep the public safe on the cheap. Boris Johnson and our MP Paul Maynard must guarantee the resources needed to protect our communities and help prevent young people from getting involved in crime in the first place.”

Blackpool North and Cleveleys MP Paul Maynard was approached for comment on the story.