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Youth Custody Service

We are a specialist service within HM Prison & Probation Service. We focus on the care and rehabilitation of children and young people aged 10 to 18 in custody.

Facts about the YCS

  • 3 public Young Offender Institutions run by YCS in England and Wales
  • We work with the Youth Justice Board and other partners
  • Around 500 children and young people in the youth secure estate

What YCS does

The children and young people in our care are among the most challenging and vulnerable in our society.

Find out more about children in custody (GOV.UK, opens in a new tab)

We enable the children and young people in our care to access education and develop new skills so that they can live positive and crime-free lives on their release.

The youth secure estate comprises 3 public Young Offender Institutions (YOIs) and one secure training centre.

There is also one privately run YOI and 8 secure children’s homes run by local authorities.

Anyone under 18 who is sentenced to custody is sent to a secure centre for children, not to an adult prison. Children aged under 15 would typically be held in a secure children’s home, while those aged 15 to 18 would be held in a YOI or secure training centre.

Find out more about what the YCS does (GOV.UK, opens in a new tab)

Female YCS officer

Where you can work

We recruit for youth justice workers across the 3 public YOIs in England:

  • HM YOI Wetherby in West Yorkshire
  • HM YOI Werrington in Stoke on Trent, Staffordshire
  • HM YOI Feltham A in Greater London

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