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Restorative Justice Conferencing and the Youth Criminal Justice Act

Linton, Hilary
June 4, 2015

Source: (2003) Paper. Centre for Restorative Justice, Simon Fraser University, Canada. Downloaded 8 September 2004.

Formal restorative approaches to youth crime are being tentatively introduced in Ontario, by provincially supported youth justice committees, police and crown referral to alternatives to court processes and by ad hoc restorative processes hosted by various organizations and agencies. Restorative processes have been shown to achieve the objectives of the YCJA better than the traditional, punitive alternative approach. However, the use of restorative justice conferencing and other such processes is still limited in Ontario, by and large, to only the least serious cases, representing a small percentage of youth in the system. This paper reviews the research establishing the effectiveness of restorative approaches to youth crime, particularly the use of conferencing, and the use of such processes in Ontario. It recommends that restorative justice become the mainstream approach for all youth crime except the most violent and persistent offenders. Tthe challenges and opportunities presented by such an expansion of restorative justice conferences are addressed. (excerpt)


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