Our Youth Panel
Since its formation in 2018, the Youth Panel has provided us with an invaluable perspective on why under-25s have low confidence in the complaints system, the barriers to making a complaint and how to improve engagement with this age group. Once we had decided that a Youth Panel was needed to engage with young people, we commissioned Leaders Unlocked, the not-for-profit social enterprise, to recruit the Panel and to support them in their work.
Our Youth Panel is made up of 40 young people aged 16-25 from diverse communities across England and Wales. They talk to their peers and help identify potential solutions to increase young people’s trust and confidence in both policing, and the police complaints system. The Panel meet with us on a regular basis to inform our understanding of policing matters that affect young people and to co-operate on a range of projects.
Panel members have been guest editors of our Learning the Lessons magazine, have created the well-received Young Persons Guide to the Police Complaints System document and accompanying video, and a ‘know your rights’ social media campaign. They have also produced blogs for our website and hosted a webinar for staff on our intranet.
Get to know our Youth Panel
Achievements of our Youth Panel
Our Youth Panel presented and co-chaired at the NPCC Child Centred Policing Conference in 2020, contributed to stop and search learning recommendations for the Metropolitan Police, produced poster guidance for the police to help them better interact with young people. They have also briefed several other forces on issues to consider when officers encounter young people.
They have also worked with our recruitment panels, provided information to our Unitary Board, have been ‘reverse mentors’ to the members of our leadership team, presented their perspective on equality and diversity, and also contributed to our decision maker training on racial discrimination.
In 2022, our Youth Panel decided to undertake a national survey to examine young people’s views and experiences of policing and police complaints across England and Wales. This piece of research investigated under-25s’ opinions and experiences of policing, their trust levels in the police and the complaints system, and ideas for how this could be improved.
It is a core principle of the Youth Panel that their work is youth-led and that they work cooperatively with, but independently of us.