Relative to the young delinquent, this tradition of juristic liberalism has made for a partially "legalistic" handling of the offender, an effort to distinguish as clearly as likely between delinquent and non-delinquent and to treat only the former with the sanctions of the state. The offender might be looked upon by the state as one functioning with greater or less autonomy of will who has chosen to violate the law and who should be dealt with correctively to discourage him and others from further infractions.
The full rigours of the criminal law are mitigated by reason of the offender's youth, but the legal view would conserve in the hearings of children's courts a real test of the individual's status as a delinquent before relating to him the modern and individualized methods of treatment. The child is not a delinquent except the court has found him so. 2. Identify procedures used by the justice system The juvenile justice system was developed to be rehabilitative in nature. It expected to "save" youths who had given way to poor environments by correcting the insufficiencies that led them to commit crimes.
Over numerous years, the system lost its individualized character and in its place began to place juveniles in large herd care facilities with little individually tailored attention. As crime generally and juvenile crime in particular became a larger centre of public attention in recent decades, legislatures and law enforcement administrators have intended to systemically shift juvenile justice from an individualized, rehabilitative system toward a more castigator, less treatment-oriented system.
The juvenile justice system in the United States has affronted long by using rehabilitative and punitive treatments to balance the system's challenging goals. The balance between rehabilitation and punishment has transferred numerous times, signifying changes in the political climate. Perceived increases or decreases in crime rates influence the oratory of public debate and influence the political infrastructure to favour one model over the other. Currently, public debate has moved the balance greatly toward the punitive side of a range that runs from pure treatment to pure punishment.
In current years, some legislatures have approved a more punitive model of juvenile justice without approving corresponding rehabilitative or treatment elements. By shifting to this more punitive model, the political process has enthused toward a strategy that constantly has been useless in reducing juvenile crime. The shift from rehabilitation deteriorates the juvenile justice system's capability to enable juvenile offenders to take accountability for themselves and to defend them as victims of an imperfect society.
Though shifting from protecting offenders might resolve the internal discrepancy of the system itself, it fails to respect the broader stability between the societal cost of exterminating social welfare problems and society's enthusiasm to tolerate some level of juvenile crime. The punitive model permits society to castigate youths for society's own failure in resolving social welfare problems. However, the usual foundation for the juvenile justice system is rehabilitation.
Rehabilitation is focussed toward decreasing recidivism as well as attempting to instil in juvenile offenders some anticipation for their own futures by teaching inner control, providing them alternative opportunities, and changing their consideration patterns, ideals, and values. (Paul W. Keve, 1995). Presently, such rehabilitative approaches address corrective education, skills and job training, family and individual therapy, and other treatments intended at turning an errant youth into a productive associate of society.
Rehabilitative efforts are usually thriving only where there are legitimate opportunities presented for offenders while they leave the juvenile facility. Since the mid of seventies, most state juvenile systems have moved further from the rehabilitative approach, in part as a consequence of several studies showing a rehabilitative program to be expensive, time consuming, and not adequately successful at reducing recidivism. Some program that take in a rehabilitative approach have proven helpful, though, at reducing recidivism and thus "rehabilitating" juveniles.