Chapter TwoA SHORT HISTORY OF JUVENILE CORRECTIONS
History of Juvenile Corrections in Europe Children have had a history of being neglected, abandoned, and deserted over the past 2,000 years. This is attributed to a combination of high fertility and high infant mortality. Children were treated as if they did not exist and were only cared for when death was imminent In 1349, the English Poor Laws began caring for children that were abandoned or neglected. These laws set the groundwork for social legislation in Colonial America The term “juvenile delinquent” was first used in 1800, right when the first asylums were being created to house delinquent boys
Early American Juvenile Justice Systems In America, delinquent and abandoned children were feared to become “paupers” or undeserving poor people because of their wicked and dissolute ways. Paupers were “deceitful, traitorous, hostile, rude, brutal, rebellious, sullen, wasteful, cowardly, dirty, blasphemous, and lazy” In 1817, the Society for the Prevention of Pauperism rallied for new and separate prisons for juveniles that were to be operated like schools for instruction rather than punishment. The first institution for juvenile offenders, established January 1, 1825 in New York City, was the House of Refuge. 73 juveniles were admitted in the first year By 1857, there were 17 of these facilities in larger cities such as Boston During their time in these facilities, they would be subjected to hard work and education, in hopes that they would not become paupers. Their stay was temporary, being discharged by their 21st birthday, where they were usually sent to live with families who would provide an apprenticeship The reform school system began in 1846 in Westborough, Massachusetts at the Lyman Reform School for Boys
Reform Movements in Juvenile Justice People v. Turner (1870) set the stage for the development of the first juvenile court. The Court found that Daniel O’Conner was sent to the Chicago House of Refuge without his parents’ consent and was being punished and deprived of his parents’ care In the 1880s, “child savers”, began advocating for special laws for juveniles and the creation of institutions to care for and protect them Jane Addams established the Hull House in Chicago that provided care and support for delinquent youth The first juvenile court was established in Chicago, Illinois in 1899 and was based on the principle of parens patriae – enabling the state to act in lieu of the parent and in the best interests of the child
The Evolution of 20th Century Juvenile Corrections Cottage Institutions The Lyman Reform School for Boys was the first to introduce the residential cottage plan (replacing the prison-like barracks). This plan allowed for “parents” to live with the children in each cottage, adding an emphasis on rehabilitation through education and hard work Self-government – allowed youth to be involved in the definition and enforcement of rules under close supervision of the staff. Still used today in guided group interaction or positive peer culture “Cottage parents” provided the youth with parental supervision and counseling in an attempt to create a normal family environment Because of today’s labor laws, cottage parents can only be with the youth during normal working hours, so their presence has to be supplemented by day counselors and other support staff (which does not provide for much stability) Cottage style reformatories still exist today; in 2004, there were at least 868 group homes in the U.S.
New Generation Ideas The 1960s & 1970s saw the development of direct supervision & “podular design”– referred to as the new generation – based on the normalization treatment model Direct supervision is undertaken by staff members who work in the inmate living unit with the residents 24 hours a day, enabling staff to work closely with the youth & help them develop better social skills, problem-solving, and behavior management Goals of a new generation design: Effective control Safety of staff and inmates Effective supervision Justice & fairness Competent staff Effective communications Classification and orientation Staff ownership of operations Manageable & cost-effective operations
Federal Government Involved in Juvenile Justice In the 1960s, a number a cases were brought before the U.S. Supreme Court that resulted in youth being granted more due process protections Thousands of youths (as young as 8 or 9) every year are housed in county jails for months and even years at a time By the 1970s, almost ½ of all youth placed outside the home were held on status offenses that would not be criminal offenses if they were adults (such as truancy & curfew violations) Non-delinquent youth are placed in jeopardy of physical and psychological harm in adult jails Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (1974) – grants were offered to states that removed status offenders from secure custody and separated adult and juvenile inmates Authorized the development of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention – provides technical assistance to agencies with the goals of preventing delinquency & protecting children
“Get Tough” Juvenile Justice Beginning in the 1970s and continuing through the 1990s, public response to juvenile offenders was unsympathetic At the peak of the juvenile crime epidemic in 1993, 3,760 juveniles were arrested for murder Partly in response to these increased levels of violent juvenile crime, this period witnessed legislative reforms designed to make it easier to adjudicate youth in adult courts Suring the “get tough” era, juvenile facilities were severely overcrowded to the point where the constitutionality of the conditions of confinement were questioned, especially in detention centers During this time, states began eliminating large institutions and turned towards community-based treatment centers
“Get Tough” Juvenile Justice Boots camps emerged in the 198os and 1990s as a new form of housing youth in military based treatment programs The greatest stimuli for architectural change was the Juvenile Crime Enforcement and Accountability Challenge Grant program of 1997, which created matching federal funds for new and remodeled juvenile facilities It encouraged states to provide direct intervention strategies for youthful offenders and emphasized strategies related to out-of-home placement for low risk juveniles
Chapter Two: Main Points Large juvenile facilities are not effective in rehabilitation Smaller and more homelike residential placements are goals of the new generation approach The new generation movement also involves a movement away from the “get tough” philosophy to a more rehabilitative model The most recent and most effective strategies for treating and rehabilitating juvenile offenders is a comprehensive, community-based model that integrates prevention programming Secure placement is only for those most violent and serious juvenile offenders: those who pose a threat to themselves and others
Chapter Two: Main Points Small, community-based facilities Engage local communities in the prevention, sanction, and treatment of juveniles. Community partners can include schools, volunteers, mentors, businesses, government agencies, and religious and civic organizations Help youth create personal bonds with mentors and other adults in the community Create ongoing family involvement and intervention activities, which helps recognize the critical role of family in treating young offenders Function as a resource for the community such as victim counseling and restitution programs
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