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Lecture 1

Sociology 2267A/B Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Young Offenders Act, Toronto Star, Toronto Sun

Course Code
SOC 2267A/B

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Sociology 2267
Youth in conflict with the law
Lecture 1
In Review In Sociological Thinking
Sociology: the systematic study of human society
Criminology: the systematic study of the nature, extend, management, control,
consequences, and prevention of criminal behaviour
“Seeing the general in the particular” (Peter Berger, 1963)
Sociology and criminology help us to identify general patterns in the
behaviour of particular people
Incorporating this perspective allows us to “see” how “general” social
structures and forces shape the “particular” behaviour of individuals
Sociology would challenge the idea that we all act on our own free will
oAlways think about life circumstances that brought the youth there
oAbuse, poverty, family, lack of social bonds, addiction, race, gender,
Who Are “Youth”, Anyway?
Criminal justice system has been very persistent in what is good for the youth
Why Do We Care About Youth?
Children and youth under the age of 20 represent almost 1 in 4 people (23%)
of the Canadian population
As of July 2010 in Canada, there were approx.
o3.7 Million children under the age of 10
o1.9 million youths aged 10 to 14
Youth number declining due to contraceptives, beginning work
at older age, costs too much…
o2.2 million youths between 15 and 19 years of age
48% of Aboriginal people are less than 25 years old (compared to 31% for
Unemployment rates are highest among youth aged 15 to 24 (15% compared
to 7% for adults aged 25 to 54)
10-20% of Canadian youth are affected by a mental illness or disorder
Youth Transitions
Youth also experience a number of transitions and changes:
oPublic school to high school
oHigh school to employment
oHigh school to post-secondary
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