The Criminalisation of Youth
Transformations to the criminal justice system in Western societies are often linked with broader social and cultural changes, and this work presents the recent changes in juvenile justice in Canada and nine European countries and the sociopolitical context in which they take place. The study provides a comparison of the sentencing practices of each country, focusing on three dimensions related to the sanction practices: the custodial sanctions, the alternative sanctions, and the extension of the judicial thinking into relative fields such as school, training, and social policies. With clear and thoroughly developed research methods, this analysis illustrates that changes in juvenile justice policies are not specifically the result of differences in crime rates or the evolution of deviant youth behavior, but rather the effect of complex interactions with a variety of social, economical, cultural, and political factors.
Youth Offending and Youth Justice
How is the modern world shaping young people and youth crime? What impact is this having on the latest policies and practice? Are current youth justice services working? With contributions from leading researchers in the field, this book offers an insightful, scholarly and critical analysis of such key issues. Youth Offending and Youth Justice engages constructively with current policy and practice debates, tackling issues such as the criminalisation and penalisation of youth, sentencer decision-making, the incarceration of young people and the role of public opinion. It also features an applied focus on professional practice. Drawing on a wide range of high-quality research, this book will enrich the work of practitioners, managers, policy-makers, students and academics in social work, youth work, criminal justice and youth justice in the UK and beyond.
At fifteen, Victor Rios found himself a human target—flat on his ass amid a hail of shotgun fire, desperate for money and a place on the street. Faced with the choice of escalating a drug turf war or eking out a living elsewhere, he turned to a teacher, who mentored him and helped him find a job at an auto shop. That job would alter the course of his whole life—putting him on the road to college and eventually a PhD. Now, Rios is a rising star, hailed for his work studying the lives of African American and Latino youth. In Human Targets, Rios takes us to the streets of California, where we encounter young men who find themselves in much the same situation as fifteen-year-old Victor. We follow young gang members into schools, homes, community organizations, and detention facilities, watch them interact with police, grow up to become fathers, get jobs, get rap sheets—and in some cases get killed. What is it that sets apart young people like Rios who succeed and survive from the ones who don’t? Rios makes a powerful case that the traditional good kid/bad kid, street kid/decent kid dichotomy is much too simplistic, arguing instead that authorities and institutions help create these identities—and that they can play an instrumental role in providing young people with the resources for shifting between roles. In Rios’s account, to be a poor Latino youth is to be a human target—victimized and considered an enemy by others, viewed as a threat to law enforcement and schools, and burdened by stigma, disrepute, and punishment. That has to change. This is not another sensationalistic account of gang bangers. Instead, the book is a powerful look at how authority figures succeed—and fail—at seeing the multi-faceted identities of at-risk youths, youths who succeed—and fail—at demonstrating to the system that they are ready to change their lives. In our post-Ferguson era, Human Targets is essential reading.
Youth Crime and Justice
Building upon the success of the first edition, this second - and substantially revised - edition of Youth Crime and Justice comprises a range of cutting-edge contributions from leading national and international researchers. The book: Situates youth crime and youth justice within historical and social-structural contexts; Critically examines policy and practice trends and their relation to knowledge and ‘evidence’; and Presents a forward looking vision of a rights compliant youth justice with integrity. An authoritative and accessible book, Youth Crime and Justice (2nd ed) provides a coherent, comprehensive and fully up-to-date analysis of contemporary developments and debates. A must for researchers, teachers, students and practitioners.
Devils and Angels
Youth Justice is a key area of the current governments criminal justice policy in England and Wales. It has been the subject of an inordinate amount of recent legislation seeking to enhance the criminal courts powers to punish and prevent offending and re-offending by young people. This legislation attempts to prevent offending through criminal justice measures and there is little attempt to use non-criminal or civil law procedures to achieve the same result. This book seeks to challenge that focus and to question why delinquency in young people has been so firmly criminalized in this jurisdiction. The book addresses the consequences of criminalization in terms of the effectiveness of the measures used as well as the implications for the social construction of youth and childhood and our attitudes towards the young. Criminalization of young peoples behaviour results in them being labeled as criminal,losing identity as an individual, losing their childhood through the process of taking adult responsibility for their actions and, in policy terms, becoming viewed as a crime problem rather than as a product of failing social policy regarding employment, education and youth culture. At a society level it is contended that the identification of young people with criminal activity and the negative public image that results creates a culture of fear and distrust which may in turn create further possibilities for criminalization of their behaviour. A comparative perspective in this work examines welfare-based responses to youth crime in other European jurisdictions and questions whether the criminal justice process is an appropriate context in which to deal with young peoples problematic behaviour.This book has been shortlisted for the 2007 SLSA Book Prize.
Fifteen-year-old Diamond stopped going to school the day she was expelled for lashing out at peers who constantly harassed and teased her for something everyone on the staff had missed: she was being trafficked for sex. After months on the run, she was arrested and sent to a detention center for violating a court order to attend school. Just 16 percent of female students, Black girls make up more than one-third of all girls with a school-related arrest. The first trade book to tell these untold stories, Pushout exposes a world of confined potential and supports the growing movement to address the policies, practices, and cultural illiteracy that push countless students out of school and into unhealthy, unstable, and often unsafe futures. For four years Monique W. Morris, author of Black Stats, chronicled the experiences of black girls across the country whose intricate lives are misunderstood, highly judged—by teachers, administrators, and the justice system—and degraded by the very institutions charged with helping them flourish. Morris shows how, despite obstacles, stigmas, stereotypes, and despair, black girls still find ways to breathe remarkable dignity into their lives in classrooms, juvenile facilities, and beyond.
Responding to Youth Crime
This book presents a critique of the traditional responses to youth crime by criminal justice agencies in Australia, UK, New Zealand, USA, Canada, and a vision of how these agencies could respond more effectively. The critique examines the ways in which traditional criminal justice approaches trap young people into, rather than turn them away from, a life of crime. The vision is for criminal justice agencies - police, courts, and corrections - to become more pro-active partners in society's efforts to guide young people towards becoming happy and productive citizens; for these agencies to focus less on the exercise of retributive powers and to embrace restorative approaches; and for agencies to develop a crime prevention role through partnership with community organisations. Author Paul Omaji argues against concentrating resources on the symptom when the underlying causes are within our intellectual grasp and amenable to effective criminal justice responses. Omaji demonstrates the capacity of criminal justice agencies to become constructive partners with community organisations in preventing youth crime and constructs ground rules for high impact partnerships.
Tough Choices: Risk, Security and the Criminalization of Drug Policy explores a series of questions about the 'criminal justice' turn in British drugs policy, from why it happened at all to what led policy to unfold in the way that it did, by analyzing policy documents and over 200 interviews conducted with key players in the policy development and implementation process. At the practice level, theauthors explore how the strategic vision of the drug-crime 'problem' has shaped the ways in which drug-using offenders are identified, targeted and managed - in other words, why the implementation of the Drug Interventions Programme on the ground has taken the forms that it has.
The Moral Foundations of the Youth Justice System
When is it fair to hold young people criminally responsible? If young people lack the capacity to make a meaningful choice and to control their impulses, should they be held criminally culpable for their behaviour? In what ways is the immaturity of young offenders relevant to their blameworthiness? Should youth offending behaviour be proscribed by criminal law? These are just some of the questions asked in this thoughtful and provocative book. In The Moral Foundations of the Youth Justice System, Raymond Arthur explores international and historical evidence on how societies regulate criminal behaviour by young people, and undertakes a careful examination of the developmental capacities and processes that are relevant to young people’s criminal choices. He argues that the youth justice response needs to be reconceptualised in a context where one of the central objectives of institutions regulating children and young people’s behaviour is to support the interests and welfare of those children. This timely book advocates a revolutionary transformation of the structure and process of contemporary youth justice law: a synthesised and integrated approach that is clearly distinct from that used for dealing with adults. This book is a key resource for students, academics and practitioners across fields including criminal law, youth justice, probation and social work.
At the dawn of the twenty-first century, panic about girls’ offending in Britain reached fever pitch. No longer sugar and spice, a ‘new breed’ of girl, the hedonistic, violent, binge-drinking ‘ladette’, was reported to have emerged. At the same time, the number of young women entering the youth justice system, including youth custody, increased dramatically. Offending Girls challenges simplistic and demonising popular representations of 'bad' girls and examines what exactly is new about the ‘new’ offending girl. In the light of enormous social and cultural changes affecting girls’ lives, and expectations of them, since previous British research in this area, the book investigates whether popular stereotypes problematising female youthful behaviour resonate with the accounts of criminalised young women themselves, and to what extent they have infiltrated professional youth justice discourse. Through the lens of original detailed qualitative research in two Youth Offending Teams and a Secure Training Centre – the first study of its kind since the 'modernisation' of the youth justice system over a decade ago – Offending Girls questions whether the ‘new’ youth justice system is delivering justice for girls and young women. It also contends that the panic about an ‘unprecedented crime wave’ amongst girls is not supported by robust evidence, but that the interventionist thrust which characterises contemporary youth justice has had a particularly pernicious impact on girls. It will be key reading for students and academics working in the areas of criminology, criminal and youth justice, education, gender studies, youth studies, social work, sociology and social policy, as well as youth and criminal justice practitioners and policy-makers.