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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 134721 Find in a Library
Title: Screwing the System and Making it Work: Juvenile Justice in the No-Fault Society
Author(s): M D Jacobs
Date Published: 1990
Page Count: 304
Sponsoring Agency: University of Chicago Press
Chicago, IL 60637
Publication Number: ISBN 0-226-38980-4
Sale Source: University of Chicago Press
1427 East 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States of America
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study employs statistical, ethnographic, and literary methods to explore the social and cultural disorganization of juvenile justice. Focusing on the role of probation officers in the juvenile justice system, this analysis is based on the concept of a "no-fault society" which describes the larger context of societal disorganization that the juvenile justice system reflects and exacerbates.
Abstract: The first section presents specific cases which illustrate many of the triumphs and disappointments of juvenile probation work, epitomized by chronic institutional gaps and agency cross-purpose. One chapter outlines some of the common characteristics of these cases and presents a theory of juvenile delinquency as an outcome of the failure of formal and informal, social and personal, controls on several systems-levels. The second section generally deals with the practice, outcome, and ideology of probation casework; the chapters discuss how probation officers discharge their duties, ration their limited time and resources, overcome patterns of official evasion, obtain consent to their case plans, and cultivate a system of reciprocal patronage with the operators of nontraditional residential institutions. Statistical and literary methods are used to measure the effectiveness and equitableness of court actions in the disposition of juvenile cases. The author concludes that our "no-fault society" may not be capable of implementing necessary reforms in the juvenile justice system which will require the cooperation of families, schools, communities, and workplaces to integrate children into society.
Main Term(s): Juvenile justice reform; Juvenile probation officers
Index Term(s): Juvenile delinquency factors; Juvenile probation effectiveness
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