Report

Positive Youth Justice: Framing Justice Interventions Using the Concepts of Positive Youth Development

2010

Positive Youth Justice: Framing Justice Interventions Using the Concepts of Positive Youth Development

11 months ago 11 months ago Published by
This report was prepared by Coalition for Juvenile Justice.

HERE’S HOW THE AUTHORS DESCRIBE THIS REPORT:

The concepts and principles of positive youth development (PYD) offer valuable guidance for the design of interventions for youthful offenders. Unfortunately, few programs draw on PYD principles, often for very good reasons. We believe that can change.

The most common approaches to PYD presume that young people possess conventional attitudes and a ready willingness to cooperate with pro-social peers and adults. These are not qualities that one finds in abundance among youth involved with the juvenile court and the larger juvenile justice system. Almost by definition, court-involved youth have a greater inclination than do other youth to violate rules, disregard convention and defy authority.

A positive youth development framework for these youth would have to be different from a framework designed for more conventional or normative youth. Some features of PYD models may be relevant for young offenders, but which ones? Which aspects of PYD are likely to be effective with youth who have already engaged in anti-social or illegal behavior? Is there a way to adapt the general principles of PYD for use in a justice environment?

The premise of this report is that PYD could, and should be adapted for justice-involved youth. In fact, PYD might be well suited as a principal theory of habilitation and rehabilitation for young offenders.

Butts, J. A., Bazemore, G., & Meroe, A. S. (2010). Positive Youth Justice: Framing Justice Interventions Using the Concepts of Positive Youth Development. https://www.ojp.gov/ncjrs/virtual-library/abstracts/positive-youth-justice-framing-justice-interventions-using-concepts

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