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NCJ Number: 118343 Find in a Library
Title: Myth and Practice in the Mediation Process (From Mediation and Criminal Justice: Victims, Offenders and Community, P 239-250, 1989, Martin Wright and Burt Galaway, eds. -- See NCJ-118327)
Author(s): S E Merry
Date Published: 1989
Page Count: 12
Sponsoring Agency: Sage Publications Ltd
London, EC2A 4PU, England
William T. Grant Foundation
New York, NY 10022
Sale Source: Sage Publications Ltd
6 Bonhill Street
London, EC2A 4PU,
United Kingdom
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This study of the Children's Hearings Project in Cambridge, Mass., designed to address status offenses and parent-child conflicts through mediation, suggests that mediation which is an adjunct of the existing criminal justice system continues the use of the State's power as the ultimate source of social control.
Abstract: Ultimately, children must go to court if their parents have charged them with being status offenders, so going to mediation is a choice between that process and the court process. The parents, once they have voluntarily sought the court's help, must continue to pursue its suggested solutions until the court agrees to dismiss the case. Even though the mediation process is different from court procedures, parents and children usually come to it assuming that it is a court service. Within this political framework, mediation can provide a service which facilitates the acquisition of negotiation skills by the working-class clients of the judicial system under the direction of educated, idealistic, middle-class volunteers. Such a structure has the potential for infringing the rights of weaker parties, manipulation by mediators, subtle forms of coercion, and the possibility of an extension of middle-class control over the working class. 4 notes, 11 references.
Main Term(s): Mediation
Index Term(s): Juvenile status offenders; Massachusetts; Parent-Child Relations
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