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Youth Justice System

The part of the criminal justice system that only deals with children. 

The main aim of the youth justice system is the prevention of offending by children and young people1 and courts must always consider the welfare of the offender.2

The criminal justice system involves many agencies working together including the police, courts and prison service. Obligations under a range of international conventions emphasise the importance of avoiding the ‘criminalisation’ of children and promoting a child’s re-integration into society. This should include measures for dealing with children without resorting to judicial proceedings.3 At all times, the police4 and courts5 should consider the welfare of the child and the best interests of the child should always be a primary consideration.6

  1. Section 37 Crime and Disorder Act 1998  (back)
  2. Section 44 Children and Young Persons Act 1933  (back)
  3. Article 40(3)(b) United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child 1989  (back)
  4. Section 11 Children Act 2004  (back)
  5. Section 44 Children and Young Persons Act 1933  (back)
  6. Article 3(1) United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child 1989  (back)