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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 49778 Find in a Library
Title: PEOPLE WHO RUN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM (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: 35
Sponsoring Agency: Routledge and Kegan Paul Ltd
Boston, MA 02108
Type: Survey (Cross-Cultural)
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE TRAINING OF POLICE, LAWYERS, AND SOCIAL WORKERS IN THE UNITED STATES AND BRITAIN AND THE ROLES ASSIGNED TO THEM AND TO OTHER DECISIONMAKERS IN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM ARE EXAMINED.
Abstract: THE PEOPLE WHO FILL PARTICULAR ROLES IN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM VARY FROM COUNTRY TO COUNTRY AND WITHIN THE SAME COUNTRY, AMONG DIFFERENT COURTS AND HEARING PANELS. HOWEVER, THE ROLES GENERALLY ARE ALLOCATED AMONG FOUR GROUPS. THREE OF THESE -- LAWYERS, SOCIAL WORKERS, AND POLICE -- HAVE FUNCTIONS OUTSIDE JUVENILE JUSTICE, ARE RECOGNIZED AS PROFESSIONAL GROUPS BY SOCIETY, HAVE SPECIAL TRAINING, AND ARE PAID. THE FOURTH GROUP -- THE JUDGES, MAGISTRATES, AND PANEL MEMBERS WHO ARRIVE AT DECISIONS OF FACT AND DISPOSITION IN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM -- COME INTO THE SYSTEM NOT AS A PART OF THEIR WIDER FUNCTION IN SOCIETY, BUT IN ORDER TO MAKE IMPARTIAL DECISIONS. THERE ARE THREE TYPES OF DECISIONS TO BE MADE IN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM: THE DECISION TO BRING A CHILD INTO THE SYSTEM; THE DECISION AS TO THE ACCURACY OF THE FACTS PRESENTED AS THE REASON FOR THE CHILD'S APPEARANCE; AND THE DECISION AS TO WHAT TO DO WITH THE CHILD. ALTHOUGH FEW STUDIES HAVE BEEN CONDUCTED INTO THE CHARACTERISTICS AND PHILOSOPHIES OF OCCUPATIONAL AND PROFESSIONAL GROUPS, IT IS POSSIBLE THAT THE TRAINING AND BACKGROUND OF POLICE, LAWYERS, SOCIAL WORKERS, AND JUDGES WHO MAKE DECISIONS WITHIN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM INFLUENCE THE MANNER IN WHICH THESE GROUPS EXERCISE THEIR DISCRETIONARY POWERS. FOR EXAMPLE, POLICE TRAINING MAY EMPHASIZE A TOUGH LAW ENFORCEMENT APPROACH, AS OPPOSED TO A WELFARE APPROACH, TO DEALING WITH JUVENILES. LAWYERS IN BOTH THE UNITED STATES AND BRITAIN, BECAUSE OF THE NATURE OF THEIR TRAINING, ARE LIKELY TO CONCENTRATE UPON GENERAL EXTERNAL FACTS WHEN EXERCISING THEIR DISCRETION, PAYING LITTLE ATTENTION TO SUBJECTIVE DIFFERENCES AMONG INDIVIDUALS. MANY PROBATION OFFICERS IN THE UNITED STATES AND LOCAL AUTHORITY SOCIAL WORKERS IN BRITAIN HAVE NOT HAD SPECIAL TRAINING. THOSE WHO HAVE TRAINED FOR SOCIAL WORK CAREERS ARE LIKELY TO REFLECT A WELFARE APPROACH IN THEIR USE OF PROFESSIONAL DISCRETION. KNOWLEDGE ABOUT THE INFLUENCES OF THE DECISIONMAKING PROCESSES OF JUDGES IN THE UNITED STATES, MAGISTRATES IN ENGLAND AND WALES, AND CHILD HEARING PANEL MEMBERS IN SCOTLAND IS SCATTERED, BUT IMPLICATIONS CAN BE DRAWN FROM THE FACT THAT MANY OF THESE DECISIONMAKERS ARE LAWYERS. TRAINING AND BACKGROUND MAY ALSO INFLUENCE THE ACTIONS OF THE GATEKEEPERS OF THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM--THE POLICE, SOCIAL WORKERS, AND OTHERS WHO DECIDE WHICH CHILDREN ARE TO ENTER THE SYSTEM. TRAINING AND BACKGROUND MAY ALSO BEAR UPON THE ACTIONS OF THOSE WHO PROVIDE THE COURTS WITH THE INFORMATION UPON WHICH DECISIONS OF FACT ARE BASED. (LKM)
Index Term(s): Attorneys; Discretionary decisions; England; Foreign juvenile justice systems; Judges; Juvenile justice system; Scotland; Social workers; United States of America; US/foreign comparisons; Wales
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=49778

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