ATSU Juvenile Life Without Parole Essay

Description

Summarize juvenile life without parole. Describe the history of it, challenges to it, and its current status.Module 6:
Issues in juvenile
justice: Gender
Feminist criminology


Historically, criminology focused on male offending
Feminist criminology seeks to remedy that by putting women
and girls at the center of their analyses

Focus on the life experiences, backgrounds, and environments related
to female offending
Historical treatment of girls by juvenile courts

Many girls appearing in juvenile courts were there for
“immorality” or “waywardness”


“Whereas the first juvenile court originally defined “delinquent” as those
under 16 who had violated a city ordinance or law, when the definition
was applied to girls, the court included “up to the age of eighteen when
activities included incorrigibility (beyond parental control), associations
with lascivious or immoral persons, vagrancy, frequent attendance at
pool halls or saloons, immoral conduct, and use of indecent language”
(Knupfer, 2001, p. 81)” (Juvenile Justice Sourcebook, p. 509).
Court was often used to police the morality and sexuality of girls.
Source: Pasko, L., Okamoto, S., & Chesney-Lind, M. (2014). The wayward girl in the 21st century: Female pathways
to delinquency. In Church II, W. T. (Ed.). Juvenile Justice Sourcebook (pp. 507-529). Oxford University Press.
Historical treatment of girls by juvenile courts

Many girls entered the system for status offenses


Sentenced more harshly for them as well, when compared to similar
offenses committed by boys
JJDPA of 1974 focused on deinstitutionalization of status offenses.
Modern juvenile justice

Girls still arrested, adjudicated, and institutionalized for minor
offenses, status offenses, and sexual misconduct

”need to protect girls”
“Bootstrapping”

Bootstrapping involves adding offenses that permit detention to those
charged with status offenses
For example, curfew violation is a status offense that is not serious enough to
warrant detention. However, if additional charges are added, such as
contempt, that would elevate the charges and permit detention of the person.
• Why?
• Allows sidestepping of the JJDPA’s deinstitutionalization requirement for
status offenses


In the 1990s, when girls released from detention, they were more
likely to return via technical violations of probation than were boys
Race/ethnicity and girl offenders


White girls are more likely to be sent to private facilities or placed
in mental health facilities, while girls of color are more likely to be
detained and institutionalized in public ones.
“Racialized gender expectations” responsible for differential
treatment of girls of color.
In the system

Once in the system, girls find themselves in conditions designed
for boys




Girls may be identified as challenging, demanding, manipulative, or
difficult to work with
When girls violated the traditional gender norms, they were seen
as “difficult”
Shorter, Schaffner, Schick, and Frappier (1996) found that girls
in the California juvenile justice system were “out of sight, out of
mind”
May experience emotional, psychological, and sexual abuse
while detained
Source: Pasko, L., Okamoto, S., & Chesney-Lind, M. (2014). The wayward girl in the 21st century: Female pathways
to delinquency. In Church II, W. T. (Ed.). Juvenile Justice Sourcebook (pp. 507-529). Oxford University Press.
Feminist criminology

The lives of girls are dramatically shaped by gender.


They must operate in the system of patriarchy
Gender matters

Chivalry less likely when girls charged with serious offenses

Intersectionality

Inequality, marginalization
Feminist criminology – pathways perspective

Blurred boundaries between experiencing victimization and
committing criminal acts

Pathways perspective

One’s life experiences, especially those in childhood, place girls and women on a
path towards offending






Witnessing domestic violence
Family disruption
Substance abuse in the family
Criminal offending by family members
Physical abuse
Sexual abuse
Girls’ violence

In short, both girls’ and women’s victimization as well as girls’
violence toward other girls are really twin products of a system of
sexual inequality and of one that valorizes male violence as
agency and has girls growing up “seeing themselves through the
eyes of males” (Artz, 1998, p. 204) (Juvenile Justice
Sourcebook, p. 521).
Source: Pasko, L., Okamoto, S., & Chesney-Lind, M. (2014). The wayward girl in the 21st century: Female pathways
to delinquency. In Church II, W. T. (Ed.). Juvenile Justice Sourcebook (pp. 507-529). Oxford University Press.

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