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Childhood and Crime$
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Claire McDiarmid

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9781845860127

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781845860127.001.0001

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Welfare and the Children’s Hearings System

Welfare and the Children’s Hearings System

“Justice” within Welfare

(p.142) (p.143) Chapter 7 Welfare and the Children’s Hearings System
Childhood and Crime

Claire McDiarmid

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter examines the Scottish system of children’s hearings and the philosophical concept of welfare which underlies them – ie the principle of meeting hitherto unmet needs in the child’s life as a means of resolving problems and, in particular, precipitating a diminution in offending behaviour. It compares and contrasts welfare with “justice” approaches and examines Garland’s theory of responsibilisation in terms of its impact on children who re-offend. It then picks up the theme of the tension in the concept of childhood (emerging from the attempt to apply both welfare and justice approaches) between the need for protection and the nurture of autonomy illustrating this further by reference to children’s rights and to legal representation of children. Finally, it discusses how to optimise the taking of responsibility by children both generally and for their criminal acts especially in the context of children’s hearings.

Keywords:   Children’s hearings, Welfare, Justice, Responsibilisation, Responsibility, Children’s rights, Legal representation of children

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