Reshaping Youth Justice: Justice as Fairness as a Basis for Organisational Structures
Youth Justice has been highly criticised for not meeting the needs of young people in general, and particularly in relation to addressing mental health needs. Approaches to rectifying this have previously focused on changing aspects of practice and accountability, and have not had the desired impact. This paper explores the underlying philosophical and organisational structures within youth justice, and suggests that this may be a pivotal factor in meeting the needs of young people, and thus the overall aims of the service. Tensions between the differing philosophical approaches to youth justice are well documented, and highlight how ideological factors can have a direct impact upon practice. To meet needs and overcome these issues within practice it is argued that the structure of the YOS and underlying principles need to be reconsidered and re-examined. It is suggested that John Rawls’s “Justice as Fairness” could be used to underpin the organisational structure of youth justice, allowing practice to be socially just. The aim of this is to make the principles guiding youth justice practice explicit, and that this will facilitate the meeting of young people’s needs.
Citation : Urwin, J. (2016) Reshaping Youth Justice: Justice as Fairness as a Basis for Organisational Structures. Justice and Penal Reform: Re-shaping the penal landscape 16 – 18 March 2016, Keble College, Oxford, The Howard League for Penal Reform
Research Group : Participation & Social Justice
Research Institute : Institute for Research in Criminology, Community, Education and Social Justice
Peer Reviewed : No