Procedural Safeguards for Young Offenders: Views of Legal Professionals and Adolescents

By Hicks, Anthony J.; Lawrence, Jeanette A. | Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology, December 2004 | Go to article overview

Procedural Safeguards for Young Offenders: Views of Legal Professionals and Adolescents


Hicks, Anthony J., Lawrence, Jeanette A., Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology


We investigated the importance of procedural safeguards for young offenders, identified by adolescents and legal professionals. Comparisons were made of the ratings of 17 individual procedural safeguards related to the story of a hypothetical young person brought before the court for stealing $50. Procedural safeguards were rated by 362 students from Year 9 and 370 from Year 11 at two Catholic secondary schools, and by 881 members of the legal profession. There were differences related to professional role and stake in proceedings in the emphases of judges and magistrates compared with barristers and with solicitors, and in the emphases of all legal professionals compared with those of the students. These data on the emphases of young people on representation by lawyers and parents, having a say, and some control are pertinent as the basis for understanding and promoting the procedural rights of young people when they are being dealt with by authoritative adults.

**********

The need to secure procedural fairness for children has been forcibly brought to the attention of justice and welfare systems in two major reports on children's rights (Australian Government, 1995; Australian Law Reform and Human Rights Commissioners: ALRC/HRC, 1997). Each report took up directions of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CROC, 1989) about the ways children should be treated by adults in a range of social institutions, and each indicated areas needing reform.

Children are not being given their full rights in the procedures that authoritative adults use to communicate with them or to communicate on their behalf. Legal representation, the rights of young offenders to "have a say" and explain what happened, and the opportunity to ask questions or to appeal--all are criteria for securing procedural fairness. Unfortunately, these criteria are not always observed in the Australian justice and welfare systems that deal with young people (e.g., ALRC/HRC, 1997; Cronin, 1997; Nicholson, 1999; Sidoti, 1998).

The problem is not peculiar to Australia. In the United States, for instance, political expediencies and lobbies for parents' rights made it particularly difficult for legislators to move towards ratifying and implementing the CROC (Levesque, 1996). The Australian implementation hold-up, in contrast, seems to be due not to ideology as much as to lack of awareness, resources and training (e.g., ALRC/HRC, 1997; Cashmore, 1997; Cronin, 1997). Cashmore (1997) identified a particular aspect of poor implementation of children's rights: the failure to recognise the abilities of young people to understand their own needs and dues and to contribute sensibly to official proceedings. Officials, she argued, should carefully consider developmental findings that adolescents and children are able to participate in proceedings and to make reasonable assessments of what constitutes their fair treatment by adults (e.g., Fry & Corfield, 1983; Cashmore & Bussey, 1994; Ruck, Abramovitch, & Keating, 1998).

Yet, despite the acknowledged importance of the procedural side of children's rights, and despite a large body of research on the significance of procedural issues for adults (for a recent review see Tyler, Boeckmann, Smith, & Huo, 1997), there has been little systematic investigation of the significance of procedural safeguards for young offenders. Particularly neglected is any matching of young people's perceptions of procedural criteria with the criteria endorsed by the adults who are likely to deal with them in social institutions.

In this article, we take up the challenge, analysing the views on procedural safeguards for young offenders expressed by the groups who constitute the key actors in any young person's court appearance. These groups were adolescents (from whose ranks young offenders are likely to come) and members of the legal profession who function in different roles in court--judges and magistrates as decision-makers in control of proceedings, and barristers and solicitors who serve the court and the offender. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Procedural Safeguards for Young Offenders: Views of Legal Professionals and Adolescents
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.