Author Clare Ringland
Published May 2016
Report Type Crime and Justice Bulletin No. 191
Subject Children, juveniles and young people; Offenders; Evaluation reports
Keywords offending, program evaluation, youth, PCYC

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To examine the effect of the Police and Citizen Youth Clubs (PCYC) Young Offender program on re-offending.


Young people who were referred to a PCYC Young Offender program in New South Wales (NSW) between 2010 and 2013 were matched (68% of 2,055, n=1,405) to a group of young people who were similar in terms of demographic and offending characteristics and not referred (n=1,405). Numerous re-offending outcomes were examined and compared for the PCYC-referred and comparison groups: re-offending within 12 months (as a dichotomous outcome), time to the first re-offence, and the rate of re-offences and offending days within 12 months of program referral (or an equivalent date for the comparison group).


Within 12 months of program referral, 64 per cent of those referred to a PCYC Young Offender program had reoffended, with a rate of eight re-offences and five offending days per 1,000 person days of follow-up. Half of those referred had re-offended within 190 days of referral. When compared to a similar group of young people who were not referred to a PCYC Young Offender program, referral was not found to be associated with a reduced rate of re-offending within 12 months, nor with an increase in the number of days to the first re-offence, or a decrease in the rate of re-offences or offending days in the 12 months following referral.


While no improvement in the re-offending outcomes of those who were referred to a PCYC Young Offender program was found, it may be that pre-existing, unobserved differences between the groups explain the differences in re-offending.

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