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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 78135 Find in a Library
Title: Improving Juvenile Justice - Power Advocacy, Diversion, Decriminalization, Deinstitutionalization, and Due Process
Author(s): H S Sandhu; C W Heasley
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 233
Sponsoring Agency: Human Sciences Press
New York, NY 10013-1578
Sale Source: Human Sciences Press
233 Spring Street
New York, NY 10013-1578
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: After identifying and carefully examining the major problems in juvenile justice (overcriminalization, overprocessing, overincarceration, and denial of due process protections), this text describes a broad range of strategies currently employed to deal with these urgent issues.
Abstract: Specific actions are proposed to effect meaningful change. Decriminalization, diversion, deinstitutionalization, and due process compliance are given extensive coverage. The book urges 'power advocacy,' a vehicle which residents of a locality served by a juvenile court can use to investigate and modify delinquency prevention and to control policies, programs, and practices. Practical recommendations are offered to improve the juvenile court and the agencies and organizations with which the court must interact. Police departments are advised to formulate and implement written policies and procedures designed to create effective working relationships with the juvenile court, public schools, youth service agencies, and the community. The juvenile court is urged to allocate more human and economic resources to youths who have committed offenses against persons or property, to discontinue processing youths who have committed only status offenses, and to institute restitution programs for victims of youth crime. Public schools are advised to provide or contract for intensive counseling and casework services for all youths under the juvenile court jurisdiction who are chronic truants or who exhibit behavior problems in the school setting on a regular basis. Schools are also urged to provide or contract for in-school suspension programs for all youths within the age jurisdiction of juvenile court services and to refer to juvenile court intake only those children who have committed an act which would be considered a crime if committed by an adult. In addition, public social service agencies are directed to provide for the delivery of high-quality protective services for youths who are abandoned or who are physically, emotionally, or mentally abused or neglected; to provide for high-quality foster care services for youths in the agency's custody; and to terminate the practice of filing juvenile petitions against youths who run away from foster care unless they have committed a crime. Notes are provided for each chapter. Seven tables and three figures are included. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): Decriminalization; Deinstitutionalization; Juvenile court diversion; Juvenile courts; Juvenile due process; Rights of minors; Status offender diversion; Youth advocates
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