STOCKTON Council today welcomed the publication of the latest independent HMI Probation inspection report which reviewed its Youth Offending Service (YOS).
Inspectors found the Council's Youth Offending Service to be performing well in many key areas, including reducing risk of reoffending, managing risk of harm to others and safeguarding children and young people from harm. The report places Stockton as the best performing YOS in the North East.
The report also highlights the commitment of staff in making a positive difference to the lives of children and young people under their supervision.
Julie Fox, Assistant Chief Inspector, said: "Overall, we consider this to be an encouraging set of findings. The YOS benefited from having access to a broad range of universal and specialist resources, which offered a strong platform on which to deliver services. Recent practice development work, following on from the recommendations in the inspection which took place in April 2008, had focused on risk of harm to others, safeguarding and likelihood of offending issues."
The report highlighted that Stockton YOS needs to do more to increase the numbers of children and young people who comply with the requirements of their supervision.
Councillor Steve Nelson, Stockton Council's Cabinet Member for Housing and Community Safety, said: "We are particularly pleased that inspectors were able to see how work to improve the quality of services has been delivered - and is having real benefits to all - contributing towards making Stockton the safest place to live in the Tees Valley.
"But we are not complacent and YOS staff will be working hard to make positive changes, where needed, to continuously improve the service."
Councillor Alex Cunningham, Stockton Council's Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said: "We are pleased that the inspection team recognised the commitment of our staff and the service's willingness to improve, assisted by strong support from partners such as the NHS, Police and Probation Service. Congratulations to all those involved in this commendation."