Comparative Youth Justice is the first book to critically reflect on contemporary juvenile justice reform in England and Wales and across various other western jurisdictions including the US, Canada, France, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Australia, Belgium, Scotland, Japan, Italy and Finland. In doing so, it identifies major international differences in juvenile policy and practice. However, Contemporary Youth Justice is not simply an attempt to document national similarities and differences, but looks critically at how global trends are translated at the local level. This book also examines how youth justice is implemented in practice with a view to promoting change as well as reflection.
Chapter 6: Demythologising Youth Justice in Aotearoa/New Zealand
Demythologising Youth Justice in Aotearoa/New Zealand
Youth justice in New Zealand represents a clear and practical example of the maxim ‘what you see depends on where you stand’. Here, two broad coalitions of competing interests present contradictory claims about youth crime in pursuit of divergent but equally self-serving agendas. On the one hand, a loose conservative coalition of leading opposition politicians and citizen-based lobby groups paint a disturbing picture of ‘youth crime out of control’ and the ‘youth justice system as a failure’. On the other hand, in stark contrast, a liberal coalition including youth court practitioners, juvenile justice researchers and policy analysts paint a more optimistic picture. Election campaigns typically provide a graphic illustration of these ...