Essay: Juvenile Delinquency Juvenile Delinquent

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Juvenile Delinquency

Juvenile delinquent is a person who is below the age of 18, and has committed a crime. The crime committed would have resulted in a criminal offense, but since the person is not of legal age they are accused of delinquency Boehnke & Bergs-Winkels, 2002.

Cases of Juvenile Delinquency are normally heard in the juvenile court, and they are mostly civil cases. This means the child is not formally charged, but they are accused of a delinquent act. A child is tried in a juvenile court if they are 7 years and above. Children below the age of 7 do not have the capability to differentiate right from wrong. Children aged between 7 and 14 are capable of forming a guilty mind, but the judge is left to determine their capability. Therefore, the majority of juvenile cases involve children aged between 14-18 years. The state has established and recognized that these children have the capacity to form a criminal intent.

There is need to revamp the juvenile justice system to ensure that minors are not always sent to juvenile facilities. It has been established that the facilities do not offer the children with an opportunity to correct their behavior. Majority of the children who are sent to juvenile correctional facilities return by the time they reach 28 years. This is an indication that the systems might not working. The use of alternative programs would benefit the kids tremendously and would reduce the financial burden faced by the Colorado State. The state would save money, which could be used for other reform purposes. There is also a possibility of reducing the manpower required to deal with delinquent children.

Impact of revamping the juvenile justice courts

With an overall revamping program geared towards reducing the number of delinquents brought into the juvenile court, there is a likelihood that most juvenile probation officers would be relieved of their responsibilities. The state working towards developing programs that would ensure few children become delinquent reduces the number of children brought into the juvenile system Miller & Matthews, 2001.

The juvenile probation officers would be reduced, and their hiring would be stopped. The juvenile correctional officers would eventually be reduced too. This is because with a reduction in the number of delinquents in the juvenile correction facilities, few officers would be needed to supervise the delinquents. The impact of the new system would overall be negative as most of the employees would lose their jobs, but the workers could be placed in different roles in the new program. The probation and correctional officers could be placed in the new programs as advisors. With a background in juvenile delinquency, the officers would be better placed to advice and structure the programs in order to provide assistance to the children. The court appointed attorneys would have ample time to concentrate on the few cases brought to them by the juvenile court. The work load would reduce, and this would also see the court appointed attorneys been transferred to other departments within the judicial system. There would be a reduction in the number of attorneys hired exclusively to handle juvenile cases.

The juvenile delinquents should not be placed under intensive supervision. With intensive supervision, the delinquents are likely to feel enclosed, and they might retaliate Araki, 2003.

Providing the delinquents with minimal supervision would allow them to exercise their freedom. The freedom they have should be limited and monitored to ensure that follow the laid out guidelines and rules. Any community work or counseling they have been sentenced to should be monitored. Minimal supervision will make the delinquents feel free, and they can reform their lives willingly. Intensive supervision restricts the delinquents and when the supervision is withdrawn they are likely going to fall back to the old nature. This would result in them committing the crimes again. Less supervision will provide the authorities with information on the effectiveness of the system. If a delinquent is determined to be breaking the law again, they can then be taken to juvenile correctional facilities where they will receive more close supervision. Adolescents commit crimes as a way to identify themselves within the society Brandt, 2006.

Majority of them will be involved in one-time offenses only. Giving these delinquents intensive supervision could result in complete damage of their character. Supervision is necessary, but it does not mean the delinquent has reformed their character. The only way one can be sure of the delinquents character change is providing them with minimal supervision.

Initially the probation officers would be dealing with the offenders on a weekly basis. Weekly monitoring and interaction with the offenders would provide the probation officer with information to determine how the delinquent is changing their behavior. Monthly meetings would be far too long apart, and they might not have the required effect. Weekly basis could be increased to monthly based on the progress made by the offender. An offender whom the probation officer feels has corrected their behavior and are willing to keep away from criminal offenses could be given monthly meetings. Weekly basis for the offenders would provide the probation officer with insights on the progress been made by the delinquent. The weekly meetings will also uncover any issues or problems before they get out of hand. This way the probation officer could counsel the delinquent or they could change the program in order to counter the negative effects. It is vital that the probation officer is able to analyze the delinquent well to establish if they are trying to hide something, and weekly monitoring would be ideal.

Parenting power

Parenting power is vital for juvenile delinquents, but not all parents have the capabilities to deal with their children. The system will analyze the parents in order to establish if they are capable of dealing with the children as required by law. The parents who demonstrate the capabilities could be provided with the power to handle the delinquent's problem and provide reports to the court. Parents have a close bond with the delinquent, and they can easily determine if the delinquent has a problem. Since they live in the same house the parent could offer guidance to the delinquent and monitor their movements Coster, 2012.

The parent could also enforce curfews to ensure the delinquent observes the court orders. The parent reporting directly to the court would provide the court with information that would have been otherwise difficult to obtain. The system should also have some fall back plans because some parents could provide the courts with misleading information. There could be strict penalties imposed if the parent lies to the court in regards to the delinquent.

The new system would have parenting classes for all the parents with delinquent children. The lessons will provide the parents with knowledge in how they can handle their delinquent children. The parents would also be provided with information regarding how they can assist their children to reform. From the lessons, the parents will have the chance to monitor the progress made by their children and determine if they are reforming. The parents who are deemed unfit would be given more knowledge to assist them to raise their children. This will be beneficial as the children will not have to undergo the child care system, which sometimes does not offer proper parenting to the children.

Due to the loss of employment by some employees, the unions will raise problems, but the state will provide the union members with information before hand to assist the employees in adapting to the changes. The unionized employees might deny the system is better for the children as they are going to lose jobs. This will lead to legal disputes challenging the new system, and this can have some adverse effects on the program. The state should involve the union members in developing the program so that they can be prepared for the eventuality. The unionized employees could use their unions to discourage parents from taking responsibility of their delinquent children. This will be aimed at making the program look inefficient and unlikely to succeed. The employees who would lose their jobs would be provided with other positions though they might not be equivalent to the ones they initially had, but overall there would be job cuts since the program will be structured to operate with minimal employees. The main reason behind the program will be reducing the overall costs of the juvenile reform programs.

Reduction of costs

Revamping the programs would save money for the state. Having few children in juvenile detention centers reduces the amount of money the state needs in caring for the children. The detentions centers also need correctional officers who will watch over the children and provide them with education. Having fewer employees means a reduction in the wage bill for the state. The programs to be developed will be less monetary intensive, and they will ensure that the child is close to their family. This is vital for a growing… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Juvenile Delinquency Juvenile Delinquent.  (2013, December 15).  Retrieved April 22, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/juvenile-delinquency-delinquent/2155223

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"Juvenile Delinquency Juvenile Delinquent."  Essaytown.com.  December 15, 2013.  Accessed April 22, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/juvenile-delinquency-delinquent/2155223.