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Rebalancing the Outer Estates Project (Nottingham North)

Volume 592: debated on Tuesday 3 February 2015

2. What assessment he has made of the potential effect of the Rebalancing the Outer Estates Foundation in Nottingham North constituency on reoffending rates among young people not in education, employment or training. (907363)

I very much welcome the hon. Gentleman’s commitment to improving education, skills, training and employment for his constituents. He has a long record of working in early intervention projects—an area that I am personally very committed to.

I refer Members to my entry in the Register of Members’ Financial Interests.

Does the Minister agree with the old cliché that the best crime prevention measure is a job for young people? Will he commend the work of the rebalancing foundation in Nottingham North and visit it in order to see a number of the schemes that we have undertaken, including building—or hoping to build—a special college for 14 to 17-year-olds who are not in education, employment or training?

The evidence backs up what the hon. Gentleman says: only 32% of adults said they were in paid employment in the four weeks prior to custody, so the hon. Gentleman’s question is along the right lines. The evidence also tells us that more than a third of young people who go to prison in Nottingham reoffend. That is why we are putting education and skills at the heart of our transforming youth custody programme. The Government have also given £100,000 from the local enterprise partnership to the project in the hon. Gentleman’s constituency.