The Juvenile Justice System

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Submitted By nisheka
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During the late 1800’s early 1900’s youth at one point were locked up with adult offenders, and those that were mentally ill. “Delinquent, neglected, and runaway children in the United States were treated in the same way as adult criminal offenders” (Siegel & Welsh, 2011). They were punished for minute offenses and some for non-criminal behavior simply because there was no other solution. “The adult criminal code applied to children, and no juvenile court existed” (Siegel & Welsh, 2011).
Because of this Houses of Refuge were created. Houses of refuge were the early introduction to juvenile justice. A house of refuge was ‘the first institution designed to house poor, destitute and vagrant youth who were deemed by authorities to be on the path towards delinquency” (Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice, 2013). They were created and designed by the child savers to target youth who showed signs of delinquent behavior. Houses of refuge were located in impoverished or urban areas. They eventually became overpopulated because it, like adult prisons, was housing delinquent juveniles with not form of rehabilitation. A new plan of action had to take place to correct this system.
The top goal of the juvenile justice system is to prevent crime and by juveniles and rehabilitate those that were accused of offenses. The juvenile justice system began finding alternative ways to deal with deviant youth. In 1874 The Society for the prevention of cruelty to children or SPCC was created in New York. This organization was created to protect youth exposed to neglect or abuse at home and at school. Parens Patriae was introduced and it allowed to the state to take over custody and rights over a juvenile that was subjected to any form of neglect, or abuse at home. Youth today are not really treated fairly. It seems that the old way of punishing offenders resurfaced and youth are being…...

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