The EEI Champions Group (EEI Group) plays a role in evaluating, promoting and disseminating best practice in respect of multi-agency early and effective interventions for children and young people who are, have started to or are on the cusp of offending.
Their agenda also relates to early and effective intervention in order to reduce the numbers of young people involved in the adult Criminal Justice process and, while focusing on children and young people who are beginning to become involved in offending behaviour, would also link with other key areas where relevant. The Multi Agency Early and Effective Intervention: Implementation Guidance (2009) provides a context to the introduction on EEI across the country.
The EEI Group’s remit is set within the context of the National Performance Framework and local Single Outcome Agreements. Its work will primarily relate to four key National Outcomes:
- Our children have the best start in life and are ready to succeed.
- Our young people are successful learners, confident individuals, effective contributors and responsible citizens.
- We have improved life chances for children, young people and families at risk.
- We live our lives safe from crime, disorder and danger.
The EEI Group’s approach to preventing offending by young people incorporates the key GIRFEC values and principles which recommend that practitioners in all agencies who are working with children, young people and their families facilitate a pathway for help.
Role of the group
The EEI Group will link closely with the Scottish Government Care and Justice team, CYCJ, National Youth Justice Advisory Group and the National Youth Justice Development Team.
The role of the EEI Group in taking forward the framework on behalf of the YJSG is to:
- Develop a broad consensus, on behalf of the strategic group of the objectives, opportunities and challenges within this theme and the overarching themes.
- Advise the strategic group on priorities for action.
- Ensure that an appropriate structure underpins each theme, which enables the high-level principles of the framework to be converted into action at a local level.
- Undertake high-level engagement on behalf of the group to get input and buy-in to the framework implementation from stakeholders.
- Identify and bring to the strategic group issues and barriers.
- Be accountable to the strategic group for progress against priorities.
The EEI Group’s remit is to focus on multi and single agency processes and practice that identify and take action with regard to children and young people’s needs and risks at the earliest stage, in particular those needs and risks contributing to or arising from offending behaviour or from other concerns about their behaviour and wellbeing.
To achieve this aim the EEI Group will:
- Develop an evidence base around what works in early and effective intervention.
- Review and disseminate the research and evidence base for single and multi-agency EEI in respect of offending behaviour in the context of meeting the wider developmental needs of the child.
- Focus on children and young people between eight and 17 years at risk of developing a pattern of offending behaviour.
- Contribute to promoting and strengthening effective multi-agency interventions and practice with young people who are at risk of moving from Children’s to Adult Criminal Justice processes aged 15 and under, or as 16 and 17 year olds.
- Encourage discussion between the local authority, the Fiscal’s Office and SCRA in respect of diversion from prosecution and custody in favour of community alternatives.
- Embed the principles and practice of Getting It Right For Every Child within the EEI deliverables.
- Identify and disseminate good practice, including supporting local learning partners to develop knowledge and understanding around applying the principles and practice of Getting It Right For Every Child to young people who offend.
- Ensure that all our systems are more effective in sharing information to support identification and intervention for young people at risk.
- Promote consistent recording and performance systems in respect of EEI which can demonstrate outcomes for young people over time in respect of the well being indicators within the GIRFEC programme.
- Ensure their work is in the context of financial efficacy.
- Contribute to the Scottish Government Planning and Performance Improvement Framework in respect of the four key National Outcomes.
- Identify ways of involving and supporting EEI partners at a local level.
The EEI Group membership will reflect the multi-agency partnership essential to delivery of the remit. Representation will be invited from a wide range of agencies including social work services, police, education services, health, the Scottish Government, the third sector, SCRA, COPFS, Community Safety Services, SIRCC, youth work and research. Members must have the authority with which to effect change in practice and ensure resources and priorities are secured to deliver improved outcomes for children and young people that offend.