<h3>The Referral Order</h3>\ud \ud <p>The Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999 introduces a new primary sentencing disposal - the referral order - for\ud \ud 10-17 year olds pleading guilty and convicted for the first time by the courts. The disposal involves referring the young\ud \ud offender to a youth offender panel (YPO). The work of YOPs is to be governed by the principles 'underlying the concept of\ud \ud restorative justice': defined as 'restoration, reintegration and responsibility' (Home Office 1997, 31-32).</p>\ud \ud <h3>The Pilots</h3>\ud \ud <p>Referral orders are currently being piloted in eleven areas: Blackburn with Darwen, Cardiff, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire,\ud \ud Oxfordshire, Swindon, Suffolk, Wiltshire, Hammersmith and Fulham, Kensington and Chelsea, and Westminster. The\ud \ud introduction of referral orders was staggered across the pilot areas over the summer 2000. It is intended that national\ud \ud roll-out of referral orders will being in 2002.</p>\ud \ud <h3>This report</h3>\ud \ud <p>This report concentrates on the first phase of pilots covering the period of staff and community panel member recruitment,\ud \ud the first training programme, the views of the Youth Court clerks and magistrates and the initial experiences emerging from\ud \ud the panels.</p>\ud \ud <p>Published as <a href= http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/index.htm>Home Office Research and Development Statistics Division</a> Occasional Paper No. 70</p
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