Combating juvenile delinquency
Juvenile delinquency refers to the habitual criminal behavior among the young people who are below the statutory age of majority. A juvenile delinquent in the United States of America refers to a person who is below 18 years old with the habit of committing criminal activities. Juvenile offenses committed by juvenile delinquents may range from the status crimes to the severe and violent crimes; hence it is something that is supposed to be dealt with in the best way possible for the benefit of the society. The authorities in the United States of America have put measures in place that are aimed at dealing with delinquency in the country. This paper is a report of the assessment of the delinquency reduction efforts that have been put in place to deal with juvenile delinquency (Sharma, Mahto & Mishra, 2014).
Juvenile delinquency reduction efforts
The two efforts that have been put in place by my community to deal with delinquency includes punishment and Juvenile reform. Some of the delinquents are punished through the criminal justice system. The courts are specially designed to try young offenders. There are times when juvenile offenders are taken to adult prisons as a way of punishing them. The young children who are as young as eight can be tried as adults, and they may get life sentences without parole if they commit very serious offenses such as murder and drug trafficking. As of the year 2012, the supreme court of the United States of America ruled that the death sentences were illegal in the majority of cases involving children. The punishment plays an important role as a deterrent to criminal behavior because a number of children fear to take part in the criminal activities for fear that they could be arrested and imprisoned.
The other way in which the people in my society deal with delinquency is by putting in place various juvenile reform processes that are focused on changing the behavior of the children in society. It involves the use of various vocational programs and educational programs that sensitize the younger people on the importance of keeping law and order in society and the disadvantages of taking part in criminal activities. The juvenile reform has been split into four main parts that include the entry phase where the youth enter the residential placement, the placement phase, which is representative of the time which the young people spend in the placement facilities. The third phase is known as the transitional phase, which refers to leaving the facilities as changed persons and rejoining the community and, finally, the community-based aftercare phase, which refers to the period of 120 days that a former delinquent goes through after the completion of the transitional phase. The community-based phase refers to the time when the youth go back to the community. The two ways of dealing with delinquents may be used in different cases. For instance, a juvenile serial murderer may not go through the juvenile reform because it may be dangerous to the people in the society (Vargas, 2011).
Main sociological theories underlying the interventions
The theory of rational choice is considered when using punishment as a way of dealing with juvenile delinquency in society. The theory argues that the intent to commit crime lies within the young people; hence it is important to develop the self-discipline that will make the young people understand that crime is wrong hence they will avoid it. The use of juvenile reforms as a way of dealing with juvenile delinquency in society is supported by the social disorganization theory that argues that the people in the society take part in criminal activities because of the breakdown of communal institutions such as schools. The children in the reform centers will, therefore, be reminded of the importance of the institutions in society (Eadie et al., 2003).
Ideas to prevent delinquency in the community
The first idea that I will propose in dealing with delinquents is by fully involving the parents in the process. It will be important for the parents to take the full responsibility of disciplining their children before matters get worse. The second idea is to fully involve the schools in the delinquency development programs where the teachers and the other leaders in the schools are doing their best to deal with any case of delinquency that they could face in the school environment. The schools may even include the government in the fight against delinquency.
Juvenile delinquency refers to the habitual criminal behavior among the young people who are below the statutory age of majority. The society has an important role in dealing with such challenges in society. Measures put in place to deal with juvenile delinquency play an important role in keeping society safe.
Eadie, T., Morley, R., Baldock, J., Manning, N., & Vickerstaff, S. (2003). Crime, justice, and punishment. Social policy, 541-573.
Sharma, S., Mahto, J., & Mishra, D. (2014). Socio-demographic Correlates of Children Suffering from Juvenile Delinquency. Indian Journal of Clinical Psychology, 41(2), 146-149.
Vargas, R. (2011). Being in “bad” company: Power dependence and status in adolescent susceptibility to peer influence. Social Psychology Quarterly, 74(3), 310-332