Challenging Notions of Children's "Participation" in the Youth Justice System: The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, Article 12

Anthony Charles*, Kathy Hampson, Stephen Case, Aaron Brown

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

A child's right to participate in decision making is seminally proclaimed in Article 12, uncrc. Yet, it is often the case that the rhetoric associated with children's "participation rights"does not reflect practice. Especially in the case of the youth justice system, significant challenges exist concerning both notions of the right to participate and how it translates into and influences what should be appropriate interventions for young people. This article draws upon three studies which critically examined the concept of participation and children's decision making in pre-court and custody and resettlement settings. Listening to what young people said through these studies, reflections are offered concerning prevailing understandings and the operationalisation of "participation"within existing youth justice approaches. Additionally, consideration is afforded to barriers to effective participation in youth justice and the transformative potential that the right to participate in decision making offers those who come into conflict with the law.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-44
Number of pages36
JournalThe International Journal of Children's Rights
Volume32
Issue number1
Early online date06 Mar 2024
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 06 Mar 2024

Keywords

  • Article 12
  • children's rights
  • participation
  • youth justice
  • youth voice

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