This article presents a discussion as to the value of early diversion schemes, underpinned by the principles of restorative justice, for First Time Entrants into the criminal justice system. It focuses specifically on the findings of a 12-month study into the introduction of ‘Triage’ by one Youth Offending Team in the North East of England. Re-offending data suggests that Triage is more effective in reducing re-offending than conventional justice practices, due to the restorative nature of the scheme. However, the qualitative data raised a number of issues, particularly relating to problems of ‘net-widening’ and the impact of recording processes on young people’s desistance, as well as the role of victim engagement in the process; all of which could undermine the long-term effectiveness of Triage and its successful application within other youth justice contexts.
|Publication status||Published - Oct 2014|