Young Offenders Act In Canada Essay, Research Paper
The subject of young offenders in our troubled society has been one
that has generated many hours of thought and meditation for
concerned members. It is felt by many that the change needed in the
area of delinquency within the First Nations culture is to overcome the
effects of colonization and this must begin with the youth. It is with the
youth that the future of the culture lies.
There has been extensive research done in this area and
although much of the material is not directed at one specific culture in
society, the facts remain that it is a problem that is growing in
epidemic proportions. Many of the programs that exist in society today
do not address the problems associated with young offenders of
specific cultures. Although the trend is moving in a direction that
addresses programs for specific cultural groups much more emphasis
must be put on these programs.
For First Nations youth that are locked into the juvenile system,
there must be alternative treatment programs made available that
deal with the problems associated with the colonization process that
generations of First Nations people have been subjected to. The
process of decolonization will only be achieved through education,
understanding, and perseverance, and this can only be achieved by
First Nations people working with First Nations people.
As indicated earlier much research has been done on the
problems associated with young offenders and the current treatment
programs. In the following research some of the most recent and
important pieces have been used and to eliminate repetition much has
been deemed unnecessary.
Cooke, David J., Baldwin, Pamela J., Howison, Jacqueline. (1990).
Psychology in Prisons. London: Routledge.
In the second chapter of this book the authors explain in detail
the psychology of criminal behavior and how it develops at a young
age. Early environment of the adolescent, along with socio-economic
status of the young offenders are but a few of the possibilities
explored in this book. The authors explore the many influences that
can shape the lives of young people, the influences of feelings and
thoughts, others behavior, and surroundings, are all thought to shape
the minds of the young offender. This publication will be primarily
used to explore the history and causes of the subject of young
Davidson II, William S., Rednor, Robin,. (1990). Alternative Treatments
for Troubled Youth: The Case of Diversion From The Justice
System. New York: Plenum Press.
This publication presents the findings of a research study done
on alternative interventions with delinquent youth. The authors goal in
writing this book was to describe an alternative intervention model
and to examine its workability in the existing system. The authors in
their research show that the intervention programs in the past have
been ones of failure. It is believed that the success of intervention
programs must be researched in such a way that all variables are
considered before a program is to be implemented. One of the major
problems discovered in their findings is the lack of professionalism in
the implementation of these intervention programs, hence many of the
programs operating today are destined for failure.
Griffiths, Curt T., Verdun-Jones, Simon N. (1994). Canadian Criminal
Justice. Toronto: Harcourt Brace.
This publication is a prime source of material as it covers a
multitude of areas pertaining to young offenders. This book addresses
some of the cultural issues such as policing and community aspects of
the troubled youth. The author takes a close look into sensitizing the
criminal system and addresses the problems of cultural awareness for
the justice personnel. There is an excellent chapter in the book that
looks at programs for youth in different parts of the country and
explores the possibilities of alternative programs targeted for
Ottawa, Canada. (1993). Dept. of Justice. Toward Safer Communities:
Violent and Repeat Offending by Young People.
This journal was presented in an attempt to help the
government re-establish their stand that they are addressing the
problems of young offenders in the community. This publication was
primarily focused toward strengthening the governments stand that
they are moving in a forward direction. The material in the journal
primarily points in the direction that the age for young offenders
should be lowered for some offences and that stiffer penalties should
be invoked for many repeat offenders. It was clear that this would be
an excellent piece of material to use as a basis for the argument that
the government is not moving in a positive direction to address the
problems of repeat young offenders.
Ottawa, Canada. (1986). Canadian Association for Children and
Adults with Learning Disabilities. Learning Disabilities and the Young
Offenders: Arrest to Disposition.
This publication investigates how the young offenders act in
many ways does not address adequately the special problems that
some young offenders are faced with. Like those of the population with
learning disabilities many young people are processed through the
system without knowing the importance of these actions. It is made
clear that even though the young offender is accompanied by a parent
or adult, in some cases the parent or guardian also does not have the
ability of understanding the seriousness and the legalities of the
situation the child is in. The authors of this paper make it clear that
there are some serious problems with this system and that safe guards
must be implemented to ensure that as few as possible cases of this
type slip through the system. This publication is an important piece as
it shows clearly that improved systems are needed in dealing with the
young offender, and that much of the process should be initiated
within the family and community.
Toronto, Canada. Canadian Bar Association – Continuing Legal
Education. “Saturday, November 14, 1992.” The Young Offenders Act:
significant trends for the 90s.
The articles that were presented in this issue is primarily
directed at the increasing need for community involvement in the issue
of juvenile delinquency and reforms necessary to control this problem.
The articles tend to lead the reader to see that the community must
become involved in the control of the young people. With the rise in
juvenile crime it is a problem that evolves with each new law that is
designed to protect the public. What was once a question of young
teenagers has become a problem of children from the ages of seven
years and up. One of the articles stated that each community should
resume control of their young people and work with the families so
that they can become more educated in the treatments and skills
necessary to curb this problem. This article is important to this
research as the information provided confirms the fact that the
management of the young offenders must start in the home and
Shwartz, Ira M. (1989). (In) Justice For Juveniles: Re-Thinking The
Best Interests of The Child. Toronto: Lexington Books.
The author of this book has worked in the juvenile justice area
for over twenty years and has discovered that there is much needed
work to be done to develop equality for juvenile offenders. The author
believes that the juvenile system lacks the due process given to many
of the adult offenders and therefore the rights of juveniles are
violated on a regular basis. The author describes how rights are
abused, the conditions of confinement, and how abuses and
unprofessional practises are commonplace in detention facilities. This
is an excellent publication that provides a factual basis for the need to
develop treatment programs that are more in tune to the needs of the
Ueling, Harold F. (1973). Correction of a Correctional Psychologist in
Treatment of the Criminal Offender. Springfield: Charles C.
The author of this book looks deeply into the need for evaluation
and treatment of offenders at an early age. The author makes a stand
that there are deep rooted problems within society that do not address
the problems of youth. It is through this belief that the author sees the
need to evaluate behavior traits of the young people at an early age.
This publication will be useful in stating a case that treatment for
criminal behavior should be initiated with the young people of society.
West, Gordon W. (1984). Young Offenders and The State: A Canadian
Perspective on Delinquency. Toronto: Harcourt Brice.
The author of this book looks at the effects of labeling the young
people and trapping them into a life of conflict. The book also
addresses the theory of sociological effects on delinquency. The author
addresses some of the current treatment programs and also the lack
of cultural approaches to the problems of young offenders. This is one
of the publications that will be of use in examining the current
treatment programs to explore the needs of new programs that meet
the needs of society.
Wood, Arthur Evans; Waite, John Baker. (1941). Crime And Its
Treatment. New York: American Book Company.
Although this publication dates back the authors have made
some valid discoveries in the approaches to the problems of crime and
delinquency that have not changed over the years. The authors
investigate the theory of the practice of punishment and delves into
the extra-mural form of treatment like probation. The authors also
make some concrete conclusions as to early interventions such as
education, early diagnosis of mental disorders, and the strengthening
of institutions such as the home, the church, and the school.