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SOC307 Lecture 1.docx

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University of Toronto Mississauga
David Brownfield

Sept 14, 2012 1 SOC307 Lecture 1 Introduction - First test probably essay format - Second test multiple choice - The paper is more of a book review rather than research paper (do you address and assess/evaluate the material) - Lecture material different than the readings Delinquency - This concept is not just based on violation of criminal code - Also involves violations of morality and social rules/norms (ex underage drinking) - Youth courts also deal with neglected youth - Legal term for delinquency has a great deal of ambiguity (too vague) Criminologists on Delinquency and Young Offenders - Claim that Chicago was first city with children court is not true, Toronto was the first in 1894 - Toronto’s children court established as a branch from adult court (passed as “Children’s Protection Act” in 1893) - Provinces do not have jurisdiction over youth in criminal matters, a separate “Dominion Act” is required to change the criminal code and allow ONTARIO to handle youth cases- passed in 1894 - No other provinces had this power - Legislative intent of the youth court 1893-1894, passed for 3 reasons 1) Establish a private court (protect children identity) 2) Create a social welfare agency (the youth court was not to just reproduce another adult court- was produced to deal with youth in different ways) 3) Expand legal jurisdiction over child abuse bases (any person who had suspicion of child neglect etc, could contact the youth court- judge could issue a warrant to summon the family/children- typically police officers handle this, and would investigate the matter)- superintendents would be assigned to overlook/aid the children during court - Reformists wanted to prevent children from becoming future criminals - 1908 the court was established nationally - The Chicago Youth Court was established in 1897 Important Youth Court Judges/ Administrators - Ben Lindsay- influenced early legislation on young offenders- also recognized Toronto for being first youth court Sept 14, 2012 2 James Hackler- Three Stages Preceded the Formal Legislation on Delinquency in 1908 1) Reformatory stage (1880’s)- emphasis on reformatory’s for young offenders (serious sentences more than 1 year)- rather than placing youth in adult jails, place them in reformatory’s-keep them separate 2) Industrial Schools (late 1880’s-early 1890’s), more “treatment” focused- encouraged education and job skills training, replacing reformatory’s punishment*this clearly preceded Youth Courts* 3) 1890-1910- probation displaces incarceration, especially among young offenders- was also used for adults, but mainly young offenders Understanding Delinquency - Allows for further understanding of social rules - Social rules shape the youth courts Social Rules- John Hagan - John Hagan claims social rules explain culture - Culture distinguishes human beings from animals - People are able to pass on symbolic meaning/language/knowledge/rules from one generation to the next - These symbolic aspects are the social rules (humans) vs. animals who behave based on instinct - Majority of social rules are not written, they are expressed verbally “as the right thing to do” - Expressed unconsciously as manners, etiquette, etc - Delinquency refers to what will and will not be tolerated based on the rules - Hagan claims rules do not only restrict, but they also facilitate life to make things easier (ex going to school=better/easier life) - Social rules lead to roles in society, giving authority and allowing the function of society - Rules allow us to evaluate individuals (ex how to recognize if a person is a good student, social rule= good grades) - Existence of rules does not mean everyone is satisfied with them - Expectations are not always clear from the rules, causing ambiguity and individuals to make decisions on their own - Formal written laws are not needed for certain acts that are wrong (ex theft, murder) - There is a great deal of overlap of informal customs and formal written laws - As society’s grow, there will be more reliance on formal written rules- an example of this is the youth court institution, which has taken over more of the responsibilities from the family when dealing with children - There is both reward and punishment for obeying these social rules - The rewards and punishments are also formal and informal- ex thief is punished formally through trial etc, but the same thief can be punished informally by family and friends - Rewards ex- a smile (informal), a pay raise (formal) Sept 14, 2012 3 Jeremy Bentham Sanctions - Claimed that informal sanctions/punishments are much more important to controlling behaviour of individuals than the justice system View on Youth Courts - Typically seen as the last resort to deal with youth - However, it is also considered an easy way to socially control youth - Often people now tend to use the police and youth court to control the youth *most of these offences are fairly minor too* Hagan on Youth Violations - People focus too much on revenge and retribution against the youth, causing the increase use in police and youth courts - These leads to more punishment - Rather than informal punishment and treatment - *majority of offences very minor* David Garland - Discusses the limitations of prisons, courts etc - They are a failure- punish to harshly (especially o
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