Not only is incarceration ineffective in addressing their criminal behaviour, it perpetuates their experiences of violence and abuse, writes Pam Hibbert

It is gratifying to see a report based on good evidence from the College of Policing (Prison does not work for young knife-crime offenders – study, 27 April), but their research applies not only to knife crime offendersprison is bad for all children.

Not only is it ineffective in addressing their criminal behaviour, it perpetuates their experiences of violence and abuse. In 2017 the government’s own inspectors found that not one single young offender unit or secure training centre was safe and that a tragedy was inevitable. A recent serious case review listed a catalogue of abuse and failure to protect children at a secure training centre, and children in custody made 1,070 claims of sexual abuse between 2009-17.

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