A Voice for Young Adults on Criminal Justice

From 2018-19, the Barrow Cadbury Trust and Leaders Unlocked are working together to enable young adults with experience of the Criminal Justice System to use their expertise to inform changes to policy, service design and delivery - both at the national and local level. This initiative, Young Advisors on Criminal Justice, follows a successful pilot project in 2016-17.

Young Advisors on Criminal Justice aims to:

  • Gather and represent the views of young adults on the criminal justice system.
  • Act as a sounding board to inform the T2A (Transition to Adulthood) alliance, which is funded by the Barrow Cadbury Trust.
  • Produce reports outlining the views of young adults on different themes relating to criminal justice.
  • Present insights and recommendations to local and national decision-makers policy working on criminal justice reform.

How it works

  • Advisory Group meetings: Regular Advisory Group meetings bringing together members and criminal justice experts.
  • Regional Engagement Sessions: Regional subgroup meetings across the country, enabling Advisory Group members to engage other young adults in purposeful conversations about their priority topics.
  • Peer-to-peer research interviews: Advisory Group members will conduct supervised peer-to-peer research interviews with young people with personal experience of policing and justice.
  • Analysis and reports: Advisory Group members will analyse the key themes arising from their peer research and produce the key messages and recommendations to form unique youth-centred reports.


Young adults in the 18-25 age group make up less than 10% of the general population, but account for more than a third of the probation service’s caseload and a third of those sentenced to prison every year.