SOC 3750 Chapter Notes - Chapter 14: Psychoeducation, Young Offenders Act, Youth Rights
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Chapter 14: Quebec's experience in keeping youth out of jail
The Quebec intervention model for young offenders: The right measure at the right time
o The dynamic relationship between research and intervention has also played a major role in defining
a differential intervention - identification of the type of delinquency associated with certain behaviours -
approach that has become more explicit and is now recognized as the basis of the intervention model
used in Quebec.
Evolution of Quebec’s legislative framework
o To protect the nearly 80 000 poor England youths who were sent with no money or family Quebec
established two laws
· The industrial school act: which ensured housing and education for children under 14 years old
who had been abandoned or not taken care of
· The reform school act: aimed to rehabilitate offenders under 16 years old
o By the 20th century in Quebec religious institutions care for abandoned children free of charge.
· The intention was to morally and physically save these children.
o In 1951 Quebec passed the school act of youth protection which abolished reform and industrial
· This act instituted youth protection schools and the court of social welfare. Judges were expected
to act with reasonable and due care.
· The procedures applied by the judge could be seen as a implementation of the state as the parents
o In 19977 Quebec adopted the youth protect act
· This act was a major step that influenced the intervening of young offenders
· In addition to dealing with children in need of protection, the law also dealt with young person's
charged with an offence
· Provisions are included that define voluntary measure that can be offered to young offenders as
alternative to judicial proceedings.
· These provisions allow the youth protection director to either propose a voluntary measure, refer
the matter to court, or close the case
· The process was eventually invalidated by the SCC but it influenced the recourse for young
offenders outside of judicial procedures.
o The Quebec national assembly held the Charbonneau special parliamentary commission addressing
· The commission proposed the adoption of an alternative measures program that balanced social
and judicial obligations
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· The first step consists of an examination of the evidence by the solicitor followed by a decision
from the youth protection director as to which regime is applicable, by either proposing alternative
measures or recommending charges
· The commission also recommended that youth protection direction be made the provincial
director under the YOA, giving him responsibility over rehabilitation services provided to young
o In 1984 Quebec was one of the first provinces to take advantage of the Alternative measure program
provision of the YOA
o Since 1984 the number of juveniles who have benefited from alternative measures has continued to
o In 2009 5604 teens were given extrajudicial sanctions compared to 3723 who received sentences.
o Since 2000, nearly 800 young offenders a year have been supervised by alternative justice agencies in
alternative measure programs
o The opening of the Philippe-Pinel Institute enabled the creation of specialized assessment and
treatment programs for young offenders who presented with severe mental disorders
o Four major events that had a major impact on improving rehabilitation services for youths in Quebec
· Initiatives that tested alternative measures for young offenders
· The major reorganization of all social services
· The creation of social-service centers
· The youth protection act of Quebec
§ Within the act youth protection directors were appointed and in the 1980s they were mandated
under the YOA.
The evolution of interventions
Transformation of open-custody interventions
in the 1950s, people really began to rebel against custody - they started taking young offenders
out of prison and placing them in rehabilitation plays - like boscoville
o Boscoville was a program introduced in Quebec which was based on a social welfare and psycho-
educative model and that introduced elements in its program designed to teach delinquent youth the
necessary skills, values, and attitudes that would allow them to develop a sense of responsibility
boscoville had small numbers of trained staff members with small numbers of people - larger
institutions had 200-300 young offenders with a small number of untrained church goers
the intention was to re-educate
· Psycho-educative model: Based on several assumptions in regard to young offenders
· #1 love was not sufficient for working with youth. This meant that workers must have certain
relative, competent skills. Educators working with young offenders had to develop specific skills in order
to intervene efficiently. Such skills were (capacity to plan and direct rehabilitative activities, knowledge of
normal and abnormal adolescent development, the capacity to perform educational clinical evaluations,
and to conduct educational monitoring interviews)
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