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NCJ Number: 49777 Find in a Library
Title: BALANCE IN THE STATUTES (FROM JUVENILE JUSTICE IN BRITAIN AND THE UNITED STATES - THE BALANCE OF NEEDS AND RIGHTS, 1978, BY PHYLLIDA PARSLOE - SEE NCJ-49769)
Author(s): P PARSLOE
Corporate Author: Routledge and Kegan Paul Ltd
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 30
Sponsoring Agency: Routledge and Kegan Paul Ltd
Boston, MA 02108
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: STATUTES GOVERNING THE STRUCTURE AND FUNCTIONING OF THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEMS IN THE UNITED STATES, ENGLAND AND WALES, AND SCOTLAND ARE COMPARED.
Abstract: THE BALANCE WITHIN A JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM IS CONTROLLED BY STATUTES--THROUGH THE DISCRETION AND RESOURCES GRANTED TO THOSE WHO OPERATE THE SYSTEM, AND THROUGH RESTRICTIONS ON REFERRAL TO THE SYSTEM. MOST BASICALLY, STATUTES SETTLE THE MAJOR QUESTION OF WHETHER JUVENILE JUSTICE IS PRIMARILY A MATTER FOR THE COURTS. OF THE COUNTRIES COMPARED, SCOTLAND ALONE HAS ESTABLISHED A WELFARE TRIBUNAL/FAMILY COUNCIL STRUCTURE AS AN ALTERNATIVE TO JUVENILE COURTS. THE GENERAL AIM OF THE LAW ESTABLISHING SCOTLAND'S CHILD HEARING PANELS IS THE PROMOTION OF SOCIAL WELFARE; NO SEPARATE AIMS ARE STATED RELATIVE TO THE EXERCISE OF COMPULSORY POWERS OVER CHILDREN. IN THE UNITED STATES AND ENGLAND, THE STATUTES INDICATE THAT THE JUVENILE COURTS ARE EXPECTED TO HOLD A BALANCE BETWEEN PROTECTING THE PUBLIC AND MEETING THE NEEDS OF THE CHILD. ALTHOUGH THE STATUTES GIVE THE COURTS LITTLE GUIDANCE AS TO WHERE THE EMPHASIS SHOULD LIE, THERE ARE INDICATIONS THAT INDIVIDUALIZED JUSTICE--THE CONSIDERATION OF THE CHILD'S BACKGROUND AND POTENTIAL IN DETERMINING HIS OR HER NEEDS--IS STRESSED. STATUTES ALSO ESTABLISH THE AGE OF PERSONS FALLING WITHIN THE JURISDICTION OF THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM, RESTRICTIONS ON RECORDS KEPT BY THE SYSTEM ON INDIVIDUALS. THE TYPES OF BEHAVIOR THAT BRING CHILDREN BEFORE THE JUVENILE COURTS, AND THE CIRCUMSTANCES FOR TRANSFER BETWEEN ADULT AND JUVENILE COURTS. CLASSIFICATION (I.E., DISTINGUISHING CHILDREN WHO HAVE COMMITTED OFFENSES FROM CHILDREN BROUGHT TO THE ATTENTION OF THE COURTS FOR OTHER REASONS) IN ITSELF DOES NOT AFFECT THE BALANCE OF WELFARE AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE THINKING WITHIN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM. BUT WHEN CLASSIFICATION IS LINKED WITH DISPOSITIONAL CHOICES, IT BECOMES IMPORTANT. IN BRITAIN, THE QUESTION OF WHETHER OFFENDERS AND NONOFFENDERS SHOULD BE HOUSED IN THE SAME INSTITUTIONS REMAINS OPEN. IN THE UNITED STATES, IT SEEMS CLEAR THAT FAILURE TO SEPARATE OFFENDERS AND NONOFFENDERS IS REGARDED AS A PROBLEM. STATUTES ALSO DELINEATE THE SENTENCING ALTERNATIVES AVAILABLE TO JUVENILE COURTS AND DETERMINE THE EXTENT TO WHICH THOSE ALTERNATIVES ARE PUNITIVE. ONE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEMS OF THE UNITED STATES AND BRITAIN IS THE FORMER'S EMPHASIS ON THE LEGAL RIGHTS OF CHILDREN. (LKM)
Index Term(s): Comparative analysis; England; Juvenile adjudication; Juvenile codes; Juvenile courts; Juvenile justice system; Scotland; United States of America; Wales
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=49777

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