7,784 restraints led to injuries in child custody 2007-2015

Data released today to Labour’s Shadow Justice Minister, Andy Slaughter MP, reveals there were 7,784 restraint incidents leading to child injuries in custodial institutions between 2007 and 2015. Across these eight years:

  • 4,092 restraints in young offender institutions resulted in children being injured
  • 2,583 restraints in secure training centres resulted in children being injured
  • 1,109 restraints in secure children’s homes resulted in children being injured

Sixteen institutions closed over the eight-year period.

Counting incidents for only those institutions which remained open for the whole eight years, the data reveals the four secure training centres had a much higher rate of restraints leading to child injuries: an average of 81 incidents per year per institution across each of the eight years.

The average for the nine young offender institutions with data for the full eight years was 48 restraint incidents per year per institution; and for 10 secure children’s homes with full data the average was 13 per home per year.

The five institutions with the highest incidents of restraint leading to child injuries across the whole time period were:

  • Hindley young offender institution, with 969 incidents (run by the UK prison service)*
  • Hassockfield secure training centre, with 945 incidents (run by Serco)*
  • Medway secure training centre, with 833 incidents (run by G4S)
  • Wetherby young offender institution, with 586 incidents (run by UK prison service)
  • Rainsbrook secure training centre, with 577 incidents (run by G4S)

The five institutions with the least number of incidents of restraint leading to child injuries were:

  • Barton Moss secure children’s home, with 7 incidents (run by Salford City Council Children’s Services)
  • Aldine House secure children’s home, with 25 incidents (run by Sheffield City Council Children’s Services)
  • Swanwick Lodge secure children’s home, with 69 incidents (run by Hampshire County Council Children’s Services)
  • Hillside secure children’s home, with 77 incidents (run by Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council Children’s Services)
  • Lincolnshire secure children’s home, with 89 incidents (run by Lincolnshire County Council Children’s Services)

Although the Shadow Justice Minister requested data on the number of child injuries, he was only provided with the incidents of restraints which led to injuries. This means the scale of child injuries remains unknown.

Annual restraint statistics published by the Youth Justice Board have to date included only restraint incidents that led to injuries requiring medical or hospital treatment. These latest figures go further than those released in January 2016, covering all types of injuries, since data for individual institutions is provided for the very first time.

The Parliamentary Question (answered 8 April 2016) is here.

*These two institutions have since closed. The data relates to the periods between the year ending March 2008 and the year ending March 2015.