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Positive Youth Justice: Children First, Offenders Second - Public Lecture: Thursday 27 September 2018

Thursday, 27 September 2018, 4 - 6 pm

Keynote address - Positive Youth justice: Children First, Offenders Second

Irish youth justice policy and practice has made major strides over the past 15 years. Legislative and policy reform and substantial investment have created a youth justice system that is largely progressively and in line with international human rights standards and accepted principles of good practice. The imminent expiry of the Youth Justice Action Plan 2014-2018 suggests that it is timely to consider the priorities of the next national policy in this area.

Professor of Criminology at Loughborough University, Stephen Case will provide a keynote address on his research on the ‘Positive Youth Justice’ framework, how it was developed and how it is being used to advocate youth justice reform in England and Wales.

The Children First, Offenders Second (CFOS) model evolves contemporary youth justice beyond its contemporary risk focus and promotes a principled, progressive and practical approach to the treatment of children in the Youth Justice System. The measurement, assessment and amelioration of the risk children present to themselves and others underpins and drives contemporary youth justice processes in the UK and internationally. However, the utility of the risk paradigm has been over-stated, it is insufficient in its evidence-base and it is incapable of sustaining the faith placed in it as the guiding principle for animating youth justice practice. Nevertheless, there is at present no consensus about what approach to youth justice should or can replace risk as the driver of policy and practice.

The paper outlines the CFOS model – a modern, economic-normative paradigm founded on central guiding principles for positive youth justice practice – child-friendly and child-appropriate rights-focused treatment, diversion, inclusionary prevention, participation and engagement, legitimacy, the promotion of positive behaviour and outcomes, evidence-based partnership, systems management and the responsibilisation of adults. Therefore, CFOS constitutes a blueprint for a distinctive, principled, progressive approach to working with children; one that can be adopted and adapted by local authority areas throughout England and Wales, and by other nation states across the UK, Europe and beyond. The evolution, trajectory and practical realisation of a CFOS in Wales will be discussed and animated with evidence from a twenty-year programme of associated reflective research.

Stephen Case’s primary research interests are youth justice, youth crime prevention, children’s rights and social justice, particularly the promotion of positive, children first ways of working with children embroiled in the Youth Justice System. He has conducted associated research for the ESRC, Home Office, Youth Justice Board, Welsh Government and the Leverhulme Trust. He has published widely on the topic of positive youth justice, most notably in Youth Justice Journal (cf. Case and Haines 2018), has co-authored the book ‘Positive Youth Justice: Children First, Offenders Second’ (Haines and Case 2015) and has most recently published ‘Youth Justice: A Critical Introduction’ (Case 2018). He is also a Director of the Standing Committee for Youth Justice and sits on the steering group of the Association of Panel Members.

Hosted by Campus Location Accessibility Room Event Type Type of Event Audience Cost Contact Email
Dr Mary Rogan and the Law School Crime and Punishment Research Group Arts Building, Trinity College Dublin Yes Room 2041B, Ui Chadhain Theatre, Conferences, Courses, Lectures and Seminars, Public, Workshops and Training One-time event Postgrad, Alumni, Faculty & Staff, Public Free admission but registration is required. Please register here.