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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 200383 Find in a Library
Title: Communities, Conferences and Restorative Social Justice
Journal: Criminal Justice  Volume:3  Issue:2  Dated:May 2003  Pages:139-160
Author(s): Rob White
Date Published: May 2003
Page Count: 22
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article discusses how community-building in Australia can be integrated into the practices of juvenile justice work, with attention to the need for conceptualizing juvenile delinquency prevention and juvenile sanctioning as a community task.
Abstract: As used in this article, "community" refers to a wide diversity of people with varying perceptions, interests, and safety concerns. As the first part of this article shows, the extent of community cohesion and societal resources at the neighborhood level has a major influence on the propensity of youth to develop criminal and antisocial behavior. This suggests that an effective policy for responding to juvenile crime is to enhance community prospects in addition to addressing specific factors related to individual behaviors. The second part of the article describes recent trends in "restorative justice," which is a model for responding to juvenile offending that emphasizes the repairing of social harm caused by crime by involving the offender, victims, and relevant community members in the sanctioning process. In Australia, the restorative justice model is applied to juvenile offending in the form of juvenile conferencing, through which the parties with a stake in the harm caused and the means for repairing it are brought together to develop a plan for holding the offender accountable for repairing the harm of his/her offense. The strengths and limitations of this approach are discussed. The final part of this article presents a model of "restorative social justice," an approach that is built upon the concepts of solidarity, compensation, and community empowerment. After exploring general principles of intervention for juveniles, this section describes a range of measures that might be adopted in juvenile delinquency prevention and sanctioning. Attention is given to social inclusion, practice based on communal objectives, the formation of communities of support, and the enhancement of community resources. The article concludes with a discussion of service provision and the role of juvenile justice professionals. 2 tables and 48 references
Main Term(s): Community-based corrections (juvenile)
Index Term(s): Australia; Community involvement; Family conferencing; Foreign juvenile justice systems; Restorative Justice; Social conditions
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