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The Custody of Indigenous Youth and Young Men: A Rite of Passage and Diversionary Programs (Strategies) for Youth and Other Offenders.

Van Zyl, Allan
June 4, 2015

Source: (2001) Report. The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust of Australia. Downloaded 15 April 2003.

This report results from a two-month observational study, conducted by Allan Van Zyl, of various efforts in Western Canada and Alaska to effect attitudinal change in indigenous young men and youth. Van Zyl looked at programs, practices, and diversionary strategies to encourage and assist indigenous young men and youth to rethink their offending behavior. Most of the initiatives are characterized by restorative justice principles, processes, and goals. Specifically, Van Zyl’s project has two aims: (1) to examine the perspective that custodial experience (prison or detention) is being used by some young indigenous people as a “rite of passageâ€? to manhood; and (2) to identify opportunities for the use of diversionary strategies and programs to change offending behavior among indigenous young men and youth in the Northern Territory of Australia. The report contains the following sections: introduction; glossary; project summary and plan; issues concerning manhood and rites of passage; an overview of restorative justice principles; background information on indigenous people in Australia; project observations concerning indigenous people in Canada and Alaska; and his conclusions and recommendations for Australia.


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