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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 167162 Find in a Library
Title: Howard League Troubleshooter Project: Lessons for Policy and Practice on Fifteen Year Olds in Prison
Corporate Author: Howard League for Penal Reform
United Kingdom
Project Director: M Hawker; S Wade
Date Published: 1997
Page Count: 47
Sponsoring Agency: Howard League for Penal Reform
London, N19 3NL, England
Publication Number: ISBN 0-903683-31-8
Sale Source: Howard League for Penal Reform
708 Holloway Road
London, N19 3NL,
United Kingdom
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This report provides an overview of the work of the Howard League Troubleshooter Project, analyzes the statistical data recorded by the project, highlights areas of particular concern, and illustrates good and bad practice by referring to case studies.
Abstract: The Troubleshooter Project was begun on September 1, 1993, with the goal of securing the release of 15-year-old children from prison custody. The project was a development of the body of work conducted by the Howard League, which highlighted and condemned the costly and damaging practice of incarcerating this vulnerable age group within the prison system. The Troubleshooter Project has successfully adapted to many changes in the youth justice field over recent years. It continues to identify, support, and apply good practice in working with young people in the penal system and to promote and secure their release into appropriate, effective community placements. Based upon the data analyzed, a number of concerns have been identified. One concern is the significant increase in the number of 15-year-olds being sent to prison at all stages of the criminal justice process; and another concern is the racial discrimination practiced against black and Asian youth, leading to their overrepresentation in the prison population. Other concerns are the inappropriate use of remands to prison in the context of the final disposal of cases by the courts, the large number of 15-year-olds sent to prison by adult courts with no specialist knowledge of youth justice law or issues, and the increase in the length of sentences handed down by the courts. The inadequacy of social services and educational services for juveniles while in prison is also of concern. Recommendations are offered in the areas of youth justice, the management of social services and the prison service, legal services, and policy. Extensive figures are provided.
Main Term(s): Juvenile correctional reform
Index Term(s): Alternatives to institutionalization; Foreign juvenile justice systems; Inmate characteristics; Juvenile inmates; Juvenile sentencing
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