Crmj 315 Final Paper

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The Juvenile Justice Issue By Skyler Ford Devry University CRMJ 315 1 The original juvenile court was based on the notion that children were different from adults; that rehabilitation was possible and more important than punishment; that most children were redeemable; and that judges, making individualized decisions about children, could best determine whether the juvenile or adult court was the appropriate forum to prosecute a case. Within a few years after its implementation in Chicago, specialized juvenile courts existed in every state in the United States and throughout Western Europe. The American Bar Association has long supported the traditional juvenile court. Its Juvenile Justice Standards, promulgated in 1981 after 10 years of consideration, set forth procedures that sought to bring due process to the juvenile court while preserving the traditions of rehabilitation, individualized treatment, and judicial determinations concerning transfer decisions. Jeffrey Butts, in "Can We Do Without Juvenile Justice?" asks whether a separate juvenile justice system is still feasible. Considering the arguments for and against the abolition of the court, he notes the universally accepted fact that modern day juvenile courts have grown increasingly indistinguishable from adult courts. Further, he describes the various procedures enacted by legislators to impose crime-based rather than individual-based sanctions upon young offenders. Lost in the debate, according to Butts, are the significant costs borne by American youth as a result of current practices. First, the juvenile court no longer delivers on the promise of rehabilitation and low stigma for those processed in the traditional juvenile justice system. Second, current policies permit courts, corrections, and other agencies to ignore the inherent youthfulness of those defined as adults. Reflecting on these
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