Courts give referral orders to young people who plead guilty to an offence on their first or second time in court. They're usually issued where the young person's offence isn't serious enough to warrant a custodial sentence.
The order can be made for a minimum of three months and a maximum of 12.
What happens if you get a referral order
At Court you will be told what Order you have received and how long for. Your parents or solicitor will be able to answer any questions.
A member of staff from the Youth Justice Service will meet with you before you leave the court and explain what happens next.
In the days following we will meet with you and ask you some questions about your life, we will talk to your parents and to other people you work with, such as school or your social worker.
Once you receive the order, you'll have to attend a Youth Offender Panel, usually within 20 working days.
The panel is made up of two trained volunteer community members and a Youth Justice Practitioner. Your parents/carers will have to attend, and the person affected by your offence (or their representative) can also attend.
The panel will get a report from the Youth Justice Service, listen to the views of those affected by your offence, and discuss the offence with you and your parents/carers. With the Panel you will identify what you want to change in your life and how things will look when they are better.
We will agree a plan to get there.
You will have a panel every few months to check how much progress you are making.
Referral Order Panels and some reparation and offending behaviour programme activities will take place outside normal office hours.
Where to find us
Youth Offending Team, McLintock's Building, Crookes Street, Barnsley S70 6BX
Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.