Source: (1995) Paper presented at International Bar Association Judges’ Forum, Section on General Practice. Edinburgh, 10-13 June 1995.The author, a youth court judge in New Zealand, examines the New Zealand Children, Young Persons and Their Families Act 1989. The legislation introduced new principles and procedures for dealing with young people who offend against the law. It provided for jurisdictional separation between children and young persons in need of care and protection and those who offend against the law. Significant changes occurred with much greater police diversion of offenders, far fewer young people appearing in Court or being detained in residences and prison. There is considerable family involvement. Different cultural practices and the needs of victims are being recognised.