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Restorative Juvenile Justice: A Way to Restore Justice in Western European Systems?

Walgrave, Lode
June 4, 2015

Source: (1996) IN, S. Aquith, ed., Children and Young People in Conflict with the Law. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

This chapter compares juvenile justice systems of several Western European countries. Five different means of dealing with young people who commit offenses can be identified in the European Union: a pure welfare approach; a welfare approach with some exceptions for penal interventions; a specific system of juvenile penal law; penal intervention with exceptions for educative concerns; and a purely retributive system. The chapter compares juvenile justice systems in four areas: (1) the age categories to which the countries’ judicial intervention applies; (2) the agencies imposing coercive measures to minor delinquents; (3) possible special procedures for prosecuting minor delinquents, with special attention for educational concerns; and (4) specific educative or punitive measures taken against minors who committed an offense. The chapter compares the three basic models of reacting to juvenile crime: retributive, rehabilitative and restorative. It also explores restorative justice as a fully fledged juridical approach; discusses the prospects of restorative justice for juveniles; and describes two basic schemes of restorative justice: mediation and community service. Abstract courtesy of National Criminal Justice Refrence Service,


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