Youth Criminal Justice Act

881 WordsJan 25, 20124 Pages
When someone mentions the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA), some would argue that there is no purpose for it. Some believe that the age boundary is inappropriate; some believe that children should not have reduced sentences and special rights; and some may think that a youth’s criminal record should be accessible in the future. If one would look at all of the positive aspects, statistics, and examples that apply to the YCJA, then they would better appreciate the statute that applies to the young adults of Canada. When one reads into the YCJA, they will find that it applies to children between the ages of twelve to seventeen (Justice Canada, 2003). Some would argue that this age is either too high or too low to make children criminally…show more content…
One person may argue that young offenders that commit tremendous crimes should not be able to have these special privileges. What they may not realize is that young offenders can fall under what is called “the age of presumption”, which is when a young offender commits an indictable crime and is over the age of fourteen, but less than eighteen years of age. If a child is under this category, their crime can be punished by being given an adult sentence, but only if the child has committed first degree murder or a serious violent offence (Howard Society, 2008). The YCJA gives the opportunity to discipline youth criminals without treating them as harsh as adults would be. Lastly, one may argue that a youth’s criminal record should be accessible in their future. Some people believe that it is not fair for a child to grow up with a crime under their belt and be undetected at job interviews, school applications, and other government offices. What the YCJA entitles for youth criminals is that their criminal record can be sealed from any schools, employers, etc (Justice Canada, 2003). If a child’s criminal record was open and accessible then the child will go the rest of their life being haunted by their immature past. By having the YCJA

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