RESPECT THE BUILDING
RESPECT THE STAFF
RESPECT EACH OTHER
- If we witness behaviour, we view to be unacceptable we will challenge it in a positive way on an individual basis with the young person in question.
- Where necessary, a young person may be subject to a ‘cooling off period’ where they are asked to return thenext day/week when their behaviour will be discussed with them by a member of staff.
- Key members of staff may impose short term bans on young people while their behaviour is addressed with them.
- Where necessary and where we feel appropriate, we may involve their parents, police or other agencies.We operate a zero tolerance policy on bullying.
DRUGS AND ALCOHOL
We operate a zero tolerance policy on drugs and alcohol.
- If a young person arrives at the Youth Zone and appears to be under the influence of alcohol, we will ask them to take a voluntary breath test. If the results are positive, we will then assess whether they are able to make it home safely by themselves or with friends. If we feel they will be safe, they will be asked to leave. If we feel they will not be able to make it home safely, we will call their parents to collect them. If we cannot contact their parents, we will report the matter to the police and social services. We will discuss this incident with them at the next session they attend.
- If a young person arrives at the Youth Zone and staff believe them to be under the influence of drugs, which will include young people who smell of cannabis, if we feel they will be safe, they will be asked to leave. If we feel they will not be able to make it home safely, we will call their parents to collect them. If we cannot contact their parents, we will report the matter to the police and social services.
- All instances of young people arriving to the Youth Zone under the influence of drugs or alcohol will be reported to the session lead, recorded as a Safeguarding Cause for Concern and actioned appropriately.
- If the young person hands over illegal substances these will be stored securely in the safe, witnessed by two members of staff, and then handed over to the police who should be informed via 101 as soon as we store it, without identifying the name of the young person. The exception being young people who are suspected of dealing or supplying drugs, in which case the police will always be informed. The Safeguarding Lead for the Youth Zone will lead on any further referrals to social services / substance misuse services. As a rule of thumb, a referral will always be made for young people in possession of Class A drugs or Ketamine; risk factors such as age, history and circumstance will be considered for other instances.
- If a young person has issues with any substances and has disclosed to a member of the team, we will treat this in strictest confidence (following all safeguarding policies) and support the individual, including referring them to local drug and alcohol treatment services.
- It is not appropriate for a member of staff to carry out a personal search, however staff can ask young people who they believe to be in possession of under the influence of drugs or alcohol to leave, following the guidance above. If they refuse as a final resort the police can be called to support.
We have a strict no weapons policy
As organisation we will always seek to support young people as well as to refer to and work alongside the appropriate professional organisations.
We may carry out random searches, bag searches, employ detection equipment and invite the police into sessions. During the initial period following opening, all bags will be searched and detection wands used for all young people.
A behaviour management procedure has been developed to ensure that young peoples’ behaviour is appropriate,unacceptable behaviour is challenged, young people are supported to understand when their behaviour is unacceptable and what Legacy Youth Zone expects from the behaviour of its members. It is important that youngpeople’s behaviour is managed effectively to ensure their safety, the safety of other young people and staff and toenable all young people to benefit from the vast range of opportunities on offer.
BEHAVIOUR MANAGEMENT PRINCIPLES
At Legacy Youth Zone our offer of activities are underpinned by youth work principles and practice. The way we manage behaviour of young people is underpinned by our Respect principles and based within a framework of recognised youth work principles:
- Young people choose to be involved, because they want to relax, meet friends and to have fun,
- The work starts from where young people are, operating from their own personal and social space,
- It seeks to go beyond where young people start, to widen horizons, promote participation and invite social commitment, in particular by encouraging them to be and creative in their responses to their experience and the world around them,
- It respects and values individual differences by supporting and strengthening young people’s belief in themselves, and their capacity to grow and to change,
- It recognises, respects and is actively responsive to the wider networks of peers, communities, families and cultures which are important to young people, and through these networks seeks to help young people to achieve stronger relationships and collective identities, through the promotion of inclusivity,
- It works with other agencies which contribute to young people’s social, educational and personal development,
- It is concerned with how young people feel, and not just with what they know and can do,
- It is concerned with facilitating and empowering the voice of young people, enabling them to influence the environment in which they live,
- It recognises the young person as a partner in a learning process, complementing formal education, promoting their access to learning opportunities which enable them to fulfil their potential,
It safeguards the welfare of young people, and provides them with a safe environment in which to explore their values, beliefs, ideas and issues.
RESPONDING TO INAPPROPRIATE OR UNACCEPTABLE BEHAVIOUR
We understand the need to be consistent in the way that we respond to unacceptable or inappropriate behaviour and we do this guidance below in implementing a staged approach in responding to this behaviour.
Low Level Behaviour Issues
This level of response is for low level behaviour issues including, but not exclusively:
- Swearing or using derogatory language (excessive or particularly offensive language might be treated as a more serious level issue)
- Running through the centre
- Jumping over furniture
- Not treating the building or equipment respectfully
- Name calling other young people or team members
In dealing with this behaviour, team members will challenge young people by explaining to young people why that particular behaviour is unacceptable and what the expected behaviour should be.
Medium Level Behaviour Issues
This level of response is for medium level behaviour issues including, but not exclusively:
- Repetitive and recurrent low level behaviour issues throughout the course of a session
- Escalating arguments between young people
Young people who are accused of bullying
In dealing with this behaviour the staff member leading the activity or area will with support from the session leader will speak to the individual or group of young away from the session in the intervention room and will explain to young people why that particular behaviour is unacceptable and what the expected behaviour should be. They will also explain the consequences of this behaviour continuing. Lead Workers may choose to contact parents or guardians at this point depending on the situation.
Lead Workers may deem it appropriate to ask the young people to leave the centre for the rest of the evening.
They may also agree a ‘cool off’ or ‘time out’ period with the young people, in order for young people to reflect on theirbehaviour whilst away from Legacy Youth Zone. The time frame for this will be agreed by the Lead Worker and the young person but would not ordinarily extend over 1 week. The decision to issuing a time out period does not happen immediately after the incident but is discussed with the team at session debrief.
Junior members asked to leave the session will have their parent or carer contacted by telephone and only young people who have consent to leave the centre without a parent/guardian will be allowed to leave independently otherwise parents/carers will be asked to come and collect them.
The parent of a senior member will be contracted at the discretion of the Lead Worker and will consider factors such as:
- Age of the young person
- Distance from their home
- Any safeguarding risk such as vulnerability or child sexual exploitation (CSE)
When a senior member is asked to leave they should be asked to leave the vicinity of the site straight away andexplained the consequences if they don’t.
Any young person issued with a ‘cooling off’ or ‘time out’ longer than missing the rest of evenings session will always have a parent or guardian informed
High Level Behaviour Issues
This level of response is for high level behaviour issues including, but not exclusively:
- Repetitive and recurrent medium level behaviour issues throughout the course of a session
- Young people fighting or being aggressive with each other
- Young people being aggressive towards team members
- Young people involved in a serious incident of vandalism
- Young people putting their own safety, other young peoples or team members at risk
Young people who are under the influence of alcohol or have been misusing substances
In dealing with this behaviour the team member leading on the zone with support from the Lead Worker will speak to the individual or group of young people in the intervention room and will explain to young people why that particular behaviour is unacceptable and what the expected behaviour should be. They will also explain the consequences of this behaviour and will apply the following consequences as is deemed appropriate, taking into account any mitigating circumstances and the level of remorse displayed by the young person:
1. Contact parent or carer
2. Issue a ‘cool off period’ or ‘time out’
3. Issue a 1 week exclusion
4. Issue a 2 week exclusion
5. Issue a 4 week exclusion
6. Issue a 3 month exclusion
If an exclusion, different from a “cool off period’ or ‘time out’ is issued, we will always explain to the young person thereasons for the exclusion and parents will always be informed for young people aged 17 or under, a letter may also be sent to parents.
At the end of the exclusion period they will be re-integrated back into Legacy Youth Zone following a meeting between the young person and if relevant parent or carer and Lead Worker.
PHYSICAL CONTACT AND TOUCH, YOUNG PEOPLE TO YOUNG PEOPLE
We believe that general physical contact is a normal behaviour pattern amongst groups of young people. Physical contact, such as high fives and fist pumps, will therefore be accepted by staff and volunteers as long as it is freely engaged in by both parties and does not carry any aggressive, bullying or derogatory undertones.
No form of sexual contact between young people will be allowed during sessions. Staff and volunteers will be required to use a certain degree of discretion to interpret what constitutes sexual contact based on their knowledge of the individuals and group interactions. If you have any uncertainty over the appropriateness of behaviour you should clarify with colleagues but generally you should err on the side of caution. Staff should speak to the C Card worker, issue- based worker, or sexual health unit, for young people who they perceive are sexually active.
SMOKING AND YOUNG PEOPLE
Legacy Youth Zone does not endorse any young person smoking, however we recognise that a number of the young people that we work with do smoke, and it is not feasible for us to ban smoking and still deliver our work, particularly to those who would most benefit. We will have regular health related sessions covering the benefits of smoking cessation and the risks of smoking to support young people make informed choices.
If young people wish to smoke during sessions, staff and volunteers should use the following guidelines:
- Young people must never be allowed to smoke inside buildings
- Young people must only smoke at the designated smoking area
- If an offsite session is being delivered, young people must leave the session whilst they smoke; staff andvolunteers should discourage this wherever possible
- During trips and residential, comfort breaks will be provided when young people will be moving aboutindependently. Staff and volunteers can accept that some young people will choose to smoke whilst out of sight of the group during these breaks. Staff and volunteers must ensure comfort breaks are provided in locations where young people will be safe if they move out of site to smoke, and that they have considered any other issues such as impacts on the general public
- Staff should not smoke in front of young people and must not smoke in their uniform.