Massachusetts and Scotland: From Juvenile Justice to Child Welfare?

By McGhee, Janice; Waterhouse, Lorraine Alice Margaret | Child Welfare, September/October 2012 | Go to article overview

Massachusetts and Scotland: From Juvenile Justice to Child Welfare?


McGhee, Janice, Waterhouse, Lorraine Alice Margaret, Child Welfare


from juvenile delinquency toward child welfare cases has altered the system's capacity to fulfill a welfare-oriented approach to older adolescents. In Massachusetts, the juvenile court is becoming more welfare-oriented as older adolescents are claimed.

Comparative data from two systems of dual jurisdiction, the Massachusetts juvenile court and the Scottish children's hearings, is examined to explore the relative use of child welfare and juvenile justice referrals in the lives of children. In Scotland, a radical shift away In the early 20th century, juvenile courts were established in the United States and Scotland for humanitarian reasons. The aim was to separate children from the adult system and to focus on rehabilitation. The United States retains a court-based system, emphasizing due process and children's legal rights per the Supreme Court decision In re Gault, 387 US. 1 (1967). In 1971, Scotland introduced an integrated system of non-adversarial tribunals for decisionmaking for children referred on delinquency and child welfare grounds. In many jurisdictions, the separation of the juvenile justice and child welfare systems restricts examination of any connection between criminal and care jurisdictions in the lives of delinquent and deprived children. By comparison, systems of dual jurisdiction offer a synoptic view of the relative use of child welfare and juvenile justice systems in the lives of children referred.

This paper examines comparative data from two systems of dual jurisdiction: the Massachusetts juvenile court and the Scottish children's hearings tribunal system. It draws on statistical data routinely collected on juvenile justice and child welfare from the two jurisdictions in the last ten years (2000-2010) and key studies. This comparison offers three advantages. First, it provides an opportunity to unsettle the ethnocentric and culture-bound assumptions behind accepted policies and practices in respective jurisdictions-"to see the limits of our ways of seeing things" (Nelken, 2009, p. 392). Second, it reveals the capacity for changing selectivity over time between and within the juvenile court in Massachusetts and the tribunal in Scotland through observation of the relative use of juvenile justice and child welfare referral categories. In other words, are low levels of juvenile justice intervention associated with higher levels of child welfare cases? Or is there no correspondence between these two referral categories? Third, it yields a more accurate picture of the extended presence of the state in some children's lives by serial or dual involvement in juvenile justice and child welfare (AIHW, 2008).

There is a sound case for comparison of criminal and care jurisdictions in Massachusetts and Scotland. Both sit within wider jurisdictional influences and operate at a sub-national level, according to devolved or state powers from the national or federal government. U.S. states retain "primary authority" for their juvenile courts (Shook, 2005). In 1999, juvenile justice devolved to the newly established Scottish Parliament, notwithstanding the United Kingdom's international obligations, the European Convention on Human Rights (embodied in the Human Rights Act 1998), and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC, since 1991). The United States has not yet ratified the UNCRC.

Population size in Massachusetts and Scotland is similar: 6,631,280 citizens (U.S. Census Bureau, 2011) and 5,222,100 citizens (General Register Office for Scotland, 2010), respectively. Children under 18 years old (by UNCRC definition) represent around one-fifth of the population in both jurisdictions-21.7% in Massachusetts (U.S. Census Bureau, 2009) and 19.8% in Scotland (General Register Office, 2011). Both encompass significant rural areas and substantial urban conurbations.

A longstanding research alliance has developed between Massachusetts and Scotland. The first major study of the children's hearings involved the late Sanford Fox of Boston College (Martin et al. …

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

Massachusetts and Scotland: From Juvenile Justice to Child Welfare?
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.