Source: (1997) Paper presented at Second National Outlook Symposium : Violent Crime, Property Crime and Public Policy, Hyatt Hotel, Canberra, 3-4 March. Downloaded 26 January 2005.

Commencing in the late 1960s, pre-court diversion (defined here as the redirection of cases away from formal prosecution in the Children’s Court), has now become an integral feature of most Australian juvenile justice systems. This paper will trace the historical development of the concept, describe the different forms it has taken in the Australian context and consider the new directions in which it is now heading. In particular, the recent shift away from single tiered diversionary mechanisms, which generally involved nothing more than a simple verbal caution, towards multi-tiered systems which emphasise victim/offender interaction and reparation as a key outcome will be examined. The advantages and disadvantages of this new, more complex approach will be considered, together with the question of whether these mechanisms, because they aim to do more rather than less, can still be classified as diversionary. Author's abstract.

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