The Michael Sieff Foundation - Working together for childrens welfare



Recent highlights & future plans

Michael Sieff Foundation - Give as You Live





Parliamentarians Inquiry


Action Plan


Court Closures Consultation


Youth Justice System UK


Young Defendants


Judicial System


Deaths of Young People in Custody


















Budget 2012


Youth Unemployment







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HMCTS Consultation on Court Closures 2015

The Foundation made a submission HMCTS Consultation on Court Closures which closed in October 2015. Read the full submission here.

In Memoriam
David Jefferies

The Trustees regret to report that David Jefferies who has been a much valued Trustee of the Foundation since 2004 passed away on 19 March 2016.

An Inquiry by Parliamentarians into the operation and effectiveness of the youth justice system

The Inquiry reported on 19 June 2014

• The Update on Outcomes from the Carlile Inquiry published September 2015 can be viewed here

• The Update on Outcomes from the Carlile Inquiry published March 2015 can be viewed here

• The full Carlile Inquiry Report can be found here

• The Full Press Release and Recommendations can be viewed online here

The Carlile Inquiry Report
Request for Comment 22 December 2014

Working with Lord Carlile and the National Children's Bureau the Foundation has sought to ensure that the recommendations are implemented, briefing the Government and other political parties and working with agencies. The Foundation has been working with the Courts at every level of the system. The Foundation has met with the Association of Directors of Children's Services, the Magistrates' Association, the Youth Justice Board and in conjunction with Lord Carlile with a Justice Minister, the Chief Social Worker, the Director General of the Bar Standards Board, the (incoming) Chief Executive of the Law Society and the Probation Inspectorate. All are committed to looking at the recommendations. The Bar Standards Board has set up a study to consider the question of competence for advocates.

One of the central recommendations was to explore the use of the concept of a problem solving court to tackle the difficult cases still coming before the Youth Court, where it might be that the young offender would be at risk of a custodial sentence. Successful diversion of some away from the courts has meant that the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children remain the principal defendants before the Youth Court, at substantial risk of custodial sentences and perpetuation of a cycle of disadvantage and poor outcomes for both the child and society. In order to take this problem solving concept further the Foundation set up a Working Group comprising representatives from the Magistrates' Association, the Justices' Clerks Society, District Judges, the Youth Justice Board, the Judicial College, the Family Drug and Alcohol Court and the Centre for Justice Innovation.

We anticipate that feasibility studies in courts will be set up to examine how to take this work further, prior to piloting of specific projects, and separate funding applications will be made for these purposes. The Foundation's work in overseeing the implementation of this work and coordinating the various interests will remain important and needs to be separately funded. Another recommendation was that there should be a senior judge appointed with overall responsibility for Youth Courts. We are pleased to note that this recommendation has already been accepted, with the appointment of Mr Justice William Davis (see the Announcement on the Courts and Tribunals Judiciary website here.

If you want to know more please contact the Secretary at:

Judicial Lead for Youth Justice in England in Wales announced

The Foundation is pleased to report the Announcement on the Courts and Tribunals Judiciary website, on 18 December 2014: "The Lord Chief Justice has announced the appointment of The Honourable Mr Justice William Davis as the judicial lead for youth justice in England in Wales. Mr Justice William Davis will chair a committee to provide judicial oversight of and co-ordination for matters relating to youth justice in the criminal courts".

The full official announcement can be viewed online here.


The Michael Sieff Foundation is a registered charity which has been at work since 1987. The Foundation is dedicated to improving policy and practice for the well-being of children and young people.

The Foundation achieves these objectives by bringing together people with wide ranging responsibilities for vulnerable children and young people, resulting in action being taken in practical ways. Since research shows the best outcomes for children depends on multi-disciplinary work, the Foundation encourages multi-agency collaboration. The website provides a resource for the holding of material presented at its conferences and seminars, with links to other like-minded organisations.

Since 1987 the Foundation has made a significant contribution to policy and practice in the sphere of child protection, the social re-integration of young offenders, combating cross border paedophile activity, improving the conditions for children giving evidence in court, work with early years' children and the welfare of children in primary schools. Currently the Foundation is sponsoring a Parliamentarians' Inquiry into the Youth Justice system.

The Foundation's achievements are often the successful adoption by others, both central and local government, of new initiatives arising from our conferences and seminars.

The Foundation will consider promoting and sponsoring with other funding bodies collaboration on matters of policy development and implementation of issues relating to children and young people. It is not a grant making body.

November 2014
Eradicating Child Maltreatment Evidence-Based Approaches to Prevention and Intervention Across Services
The papers presented at the Conference on Eradicating Child Maltreatment, sponsored by the Foundation, have now been published as a book. For further details click here

Eradicating Child Maltreatment Interventions with Children & Families - Policy & Practice
DfE funded seminars are being held in November 2014 to promote the Child and Family Training Hope for Children and Families Programme, and enhance the quality of direct work to improve outcomes for children, in particular those being neglected. See here

May 2014
The Department for Education's (DfE) Consultation Paper: "Powers to delegate children's social care functions"

In three brief pages issued in a Consultation Paper on 17 April 2014 the Government is setting the ground for a radical change of local government responsibilities for their work with children and young people. For such a major policy development the consultation period of six weeks, ending on 30 May, is unacceptably short.
Read our full response here

October 2013
Youth Court to acquire Family Court Powers?

We are in discussions with The Ministry of Justice about extending the powers of the Youth Court to give it the same powers as are available to the family court to direct a Local Authority to report to the court.
Read our full position paper here

Eradicating Child Maltreatment Interventions with Children & Families - Policy & Practice
Conference on 9 November 2012 Organised by Michael Sieff Foundation, Child & Family Training, The Lucy Faithfull Foundation
For pdf presentations see here

A synopsis of the Parliamentary Briefing on 26 Feb. 2013,
see here

Young Defendants' Working Group Action Plan 2012
The Foundation's Young Defendants' Working Group has published an Action Plan for 2012.
View the action plan here

Submission to the Law Commission on: Unfitness to Plead for Child Defendants,
27 January 2011 -

Youth Justice
1908 - 2008: The Children Act 100 years on young defendants today
The papers from this conference held on 28 April 2009 are available - here

Conference Reports
from 1986 to 2010

The website contains conference reports and recommendations from all the conferences held since 1986 to September 2010 - here

The Michael Sieff Foundation - Working Together for Children's Welfare: Encouraging Multi-Agency Collaboration, Improving Child Protection Policy & Practice
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