Children Act 2001

Mentor (family support) order.

131

131.—(1) A court may by order assign a child to a person, including a relative of the child concerned (a “mentor”), to help, advise and support the child and the child’s family in its efforts to prevent the child from committing further offences and to monitor the child’s behaviour generally.

(2) An order under this section shall specify the period, not exceeding 2 years, during which the order shall remain in force and also specify that the child shall live with his or her parents or guardian at their normal place of residence during that period.

(3) A child in respect of whom an order under this section has been made shall, while the order is in force, be under the supervision of a probation and welfare officer who, in addition to his or her duty to supervise the child, shall help and advise the mentor in supporting the child and the child’s family in its efforts to prevent the child from committing further offences.

(4) The court shall not make an order under this section unless—

( a) a probation and welfare officer has informed the court that a mentor is available, and

( b) the child and the child’s parents or guardian consent to the making of the order and agree to cooperate with the mentor in accordance with its terms.

(5) The order may specify such of the conditions provided for in section 117 as the court considers necessary for helping to ensure that while the order is in force the child will be of good behaviour and will not commit any further offences.

(6) The court shall cause certified copies of its order to be sent to—

( a) the parents or guardian of the child, and

( b) the probation and welfare officer who is supervising the child.

(7) The probation and welfare officer who is supervising the child shall give a copy of the order to the mentor and to the child.

(8) Where—

( a) on application by a probation and welfare officer to the court which made the order, the court is satisfied that its continuance in force—

(i) would not be in the interests of the mentor or the child, or

(ii) is no longer necessary because of the progress made by the child;

( b) the parents or guardian of the child notify the court in writing that they are withdrawing their consent to the making of the order; or

( c) the mentor applies to the court to have the order revoked,

the court may, having regard to the period for which the order was in force and any other relevant circumstances—

(i) revoke the order,

(ii) revoke it and substitute another community sanction, or

(iii) revoke it and deal with the case in any other way in which it could have been dealt with before the order was made.