Reducing the Criminalisation of Children in Care and Care Leavers: All Wales Protocol – Welsh Government (March 2022)


Access to reducing the criminalisation of children in care and care leavers protocol for Wales.


The Welsh government have published Reducing the Criminalisation of Children in Care and Care Leavers: all Wales Protocol (March 2022). The protocol is a framework for good practice for those working with care-experienced children up to the age of 18 and young adults up to the age of 25. It aims to avoid their prosecution wherever possible and appropriate, by encouraging a response to incidents which reduces the likelihood of criminalisation, offending or reoffending through promoting:

  • Practice that is ACE aware and trauma informed and is underpinned by an understanding of the impact of childhood experiences on neuro-4 development and presenting behaviour.
  • Child-centred practice with a focus on what matters to the child; listening to children- views and taking their opinions into account in developing policy and in the way we practice.
  • Practice that recognises in line with the Wales Safeguarding Procedures and All Wales Practice Guides that Child Criminal Exploitation (CCE) is a safeguarding issue.
  • Practice that is underpinned by an understanding of the interrelated nature of safeguarding issues such as going missing, Child Criminal Exploitation (CCE), Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE), Harmful Sexual Behaviour and trafficking.
  • Practice that recognises that foster carers and residential placement carers are a key part of the team in understanding the individual needs of children, the approach that a child or young person is most likely to be responsive to and in working with agencies to plan for the care and support of children and young people.
  • Early intervention, diversionary practice and a restorative approach to create environments founded on relationships, respect, inclusivity, fairness and tolerance.