The Issues Of The Juvenile Justice Act

Decent Essays

Queensland is well known for its contrasting position on the youth justice system, contravening with the Conventions of the Right of the Child (CRC) and disregarding recommendations made by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). The Juvenile Justice Act 1992 (QLD) is particularly scrutinized for containing legislation that states 17 year olds can be charged, tried and detained as an adults, giving courts the potential to overcharge punishments for juveniles and threaten their safety in adult prisons (). This legislation is not in the best interest of the child, fails to rehabilitate youth, is not fair, just or equitable and should therefore be amended to reach the standards of the United Nations and other Australian states. By analysing the key issues of the Juvenile Justice Act 1992 and examining the social implication of these issues on key stakeholders, the recommendation that Queensland should adopt America’s Intensive Supervision Program and change the definition of a child to include 17 year olds in the legislation can be made.

The Juvenile Justice Act 1992 states that children are people ‘who have not turned 17 years of age,’ leaving the potential for 17 year olds to be dealt with in the adult criminal justice system. However according to the Family Law Act 1975 ‘a child means a person who is under 18 years of age.’ Similarly, other Queensland legislation such as Section 36 of the Acts Interpretation Act 1954 defines a child as ‘an

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