Pos­i­tive ap­proach to youth jus­tice

Ormskirk Advertiser - - Student Life -

MYTHS and as­sump­tions about the 10 mil­lion UK cit­i­zens with a crim­i­nal record were ad­dressed at a Pos­i­tive Youth Jus­tice event at Edge Hill Univer­sity re­cently.

Guest speak­ers in­cluded Prof Stephen Case, a crim­i­nol­o­gist spe­cial­is­ing in youth jus­tice is­sues, lead­ing po­lit­i­cal com­men­ta­tor, Kenny Imafi­don, de­scribed by the Huff­in­g­ton Post UK as a “young ris­ing star mak­ing waves in UK pol­i­tics”, and Liam Hill, founder of Voice for Chil­dren, a con­sul­tancy ser­vice for young adults seek­ing sup­port dur­ing and fol­low­ing their time as ser­vice users.

The event, held by the in­sti­tute for pub­lic pol­icy and pro­fes­sional prac­tice (I4P), in as­so­ci­a­tion with the fac­ulty of health and so­cial care and the de­part­ment of law & crim­i­nol­ogy, ex­plored the dif­fer­ent ways that the youth jus­tice sys­tem can im­prove out­comes for young peo­ple who of­fend.

The speak­ers stressed the im­por­tance of treat­ing young peo­ple in con­flict with the law as chil­dren first and of­fend­ers sec­ond and also ad­dressed a num­ber of myths, in­clud­ing as­sump­tions that all ex­of­fend­ers are vi­o­lent or have been to prison, in­stead ex­plain­ing the re­al­ity.

Sean Cre­aney, lec­turer in psy­choso­cial analysis of of­fend­ing be­hav­iour at Edge Hill said: “It was a plea­sure to wel­come Prof Stephen Case, a leader in the field of crim­i­nol­ogy, and Kenny Imafi­don, a po­lit­i­cal com­men­ta­tor, so­cial en­tre­pre­neur and ac­tivist, to Edge Hill Univer­sity.

“This lec­ture on the treat­ment of chil­dren in the crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem was rel­e­vant to all with an in­ter­est in the area of chil­dren, young peo­ple and fam­i­lies and was well re­ceived by the pub­lic, staff and stu­dents alike.”

The event at­tracted high pro­file rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the youth jus­tice sec­tor, in­clud­ing the Youth Jus­tice Board, the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion for Youth Jus­tice and chil­dren’s so­cial jus­tice char­ity, Peer Power. Anne-Marie Dou­glas, founder and CEO of Peer Power, said: “I’m de­lighted that our young ad­vi­sory board mem­ber Kenny Imafi­don was speak­ing at this con­fer­ence about the im­por­tance of tak­ing an em­pa­thy-based, pos­i­tive, and strengths-based ap­proach to en­gag­ing with chil­dren and young peo­ple who have ex­pe­ri­ence of the youth jus­tice sys­tem.”

One of the speak­ers at the re­cent Pos­i­tive Youth Jus­tice event at Edge Hill Univer­sity

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