Towards a positive youth justice
Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to consider and explore the principles that should inform a positive and progressive approach to conceptualising and delivering youth justice. Design/methodology/approach - Critical literature review, incorporating primary research and evaluation conducted by the authors. Findings - A children first model of positive youth justice should cohere around the promotion of four key principles: children's rights and adults' responsibilities; desistance and inclusion; diversion and systems management; relationship-based partnerships between children and practitioners. Practical implications - The child-friendly, child-appropriate and legitimacy-focused nature of the Children first, offender second (CFOS) model can encourage diversion from formal system contact, can enhance levels of participation and engagement with formal youth justice interventions and promotes positive behaviours and outcomes for children in trouble. Originality/value - The principles outlined progress youth justice into positive forms antithetical to the negative elements of the "new youth justice" and will have relevance to other jurisdictions, rooted as they are in universality, child development and children's rights.
- Social Sciences
- Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies