Several years ago a number of states changed their juvenile justice laws in order to guarantee children the rights stated in the convention and in other international documents.
The reforms are the first positive steps in the recognition of the human rights of children. Nevertheless, very often there are great gaps between theory and practice. Many children are denied due process, detained under awful conditions, exposed to violence at the hands of police and guards, and in some cases are even put to death.
All over the world children are sentenced and brought to trial so that it violates their rights under the law. The systematic failures to guarantee children legal representation have been resisted.
Judgments that violate the international principles and laws are paid special attention as deprivation of freedom must be a measure of the last recourse and should last only some appropriate period of time. Very often children are exposed to awful conditions of imprisonment that violate the state and international standards. Frequently children are not given food, medical care and basic sanitary facilities.
The states must guarantee that children in conflict with the law are arrested only as a last measure and the imprisonment should last only some appropriate period of time. Conditions of imprisonment should be according to the international standards.
Children should have the possibility to contact with their family members, legal representatives and should be given the possibility to get the education, medical care, good food and basic sanitary facilities.
For the last several years, the incidence of juvenile violent crime and *** offenses as well, has risen. The present research defines that in the USA juveniles are accountable for almost one third of all the committed violence and one-half of all child solicitations every year.
In the traditional, due-process model of adversary justice an absolute victim is a child under twelve or in some cases sixteen years old.
The restorative justice process is conducted with the offender, the victim and the community present in negotiations that have the final objective to restitute and restore the harmony.
Restorative justice is a theory of criminal justice that concentrates on crime as illegal action against another person or community. The victim has the main role in the process and gets the reinstatement from the offender.
Restorative justice tries to fulfill several objectives:
1) Justice should be served to the victim and the offender at once.
2) Every part should receive a fair treatment.
3) The must be the opportunity for reconciliation between the parties.
4) The process must also take into account the points of view of the community.
5) The instructions for resolution must be gained.
Justice for the victim. Justice for victim is gained if several things are done. In this case a victim feels a sense of justice.
Victims must have the possibility for expressing facts, opinions and thoughts to the offender. Victims must get a direct compensation for the received harms and pains. Beside this, they need to take part and they have the need in support. If the examined conditions are fulfilled, the victim is more likely to feel a sense of justice. This is called the justice for the victim.
Justice for the offender. Justice for the offender is also important for an offender to feel that the legal process treats him fairly.
The research of people driving while being drunk shows that 21% of the offenders who participated in court proceedings of a traditional, due-process model of adversary justice, felt they were treated unfairly.
Nevertheless, only 5% of the offenders who took part in the restorative justice model felt disadvantaged. Offenders should have the opportunity to accept responsibility for their actions and the chance to challenge any wrong implications.
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