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Race and Youth Policy: working with young people

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Race and Youth Policy: working with young people Copyright free Icon

How should we, as a society, best respond to and prevent gang and knife crime and violent extremism? 

Is it fair to target Black and Muslim Asian youth populations, via social policy, as being groups most at-risk from committing gun and knife violence and acts of terrorism? 

Within a context of major cuts to generic young people’s services, is it justifiable for government policy and funding priorities to only focus on youth programmes, tasked with preventing radicalisation and gang violence? 

This course will look at the meaning of social policy, how it works as a mechanism of persuading people to behave in specific ways, its role in shaping our understandings of young people, and the role practitioners can play in mediating and influencing policy. In particular, this course will examine the racialisation and criminalisation of youth social policy as it pertains to Black and Muslim Asian British youth.

Course learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • understand how issues such as knife crime and terrorism inform ‘policy’ and ‘work with young people’ practice
  • analyse some of the assumptions that underpin youth policy
  • evaluate some of the ways in which policy can be interpreted though a racialisation lens
  • have greater understanding of how social policy influences working with young people practice. 


First Published: 02/12/2021

Updated: 02/12/2021

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