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Publications · Policing, Young People

Child arrests in England and Wales 2020

Research Briefing

  • ISBN: 978-1-911114-62-8

  • Pages: 8

  • Publisher: The Howard League for Penal Reform


Child Arrests 2020

In 2010, the Howard League launched a programme to reduce the high numbers of child arrests in England and Wales.  We have worked closely with police forces since then to understand why children are arrested and to prevent unnecessary arrests.

In 2020, there were 63,272 child arrests in England and Wales, a 74 per cent reduction from the 245,763 child arrests police reported in 2010.

This analysis is based on Freedom of Information data from 43 police service areas in England and Wales and the British Transport Police

The impact can be observed nationwide. Every regional police force in England and Wales has achieved a significant reduction in child arrests over the last decade, with all but one reducing their arrest rate by at least 60 per cent.

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