PENALIZING YOUTH OFFENDERS AS A CRIME DETERRENT

NAGA COLLEGE FOUNDATION GRADUATE SCHOOL
NOEL A. BALARES OCTOBER 8, 2011

NEWS FLASH ! !
13-years old, guns down 16-years old friend, then self
Four “Batang Hamog” (child criminals) picked-up for robberies

15 year old student stabs teacher

NEWS FLASH ! !
Totoy sinaksak ng kapwa bagets sa school Tatlong taong gulang na bata, minolestiya ng dose anyos na kalaro

FOURTEEN-YEAR-OLD Anna was raped and murdered by her cousin of the same age, Leon, in her house in Bicol.

In compliance with a new law on juvenile delinquents, Republic Act 9344, Leon was released from prison, without being subjected to any trial or penalty, as he supposedly acted without discernment.

Joey, 12, was caught carrying car tools bundled in his shirt and pulling out the berth of the car’s radio. The owners filed attempted theft with the police but RA 9344 nullified the charges.

YOUNG, WILD AND FREE?

FACTORS THAT CAN IDENTIFY YOUNG PEOPLE INCLINED TO DELINQUENT ACTIVITIES • INDIVIDUAL RISK FACTORS – Intelligence and education • FAMILY RISK FACTORS – lack of proper parental supervision, ongoing parental conflict, neglect and abuse
Robert Agnew (2008)

FACTORS THAT CAN IDENTIFY YOUNG PEOPLE INCLINED TO DELINQUENT ACTIVITIES
• MENTAL HEALTH RISK FACTORS – personality disorders • SUBSTANCE ABUSE RISK FACTORS – juveniles are using more powerful drugs today as 10 years ago – the age at which some juveniles begin using drugs is younger.
Robert Agnew (2008)

EXEMPTED UNDER THE LAW

EXEMPTED UNDER THE LAW
Section 6 Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006 (Republic Act 9344) a child fifteen years of age or under at the time of the commission of the offense shall be exempt from criminal liability

EXEMPTED UNDER THE LAW
Section 20 Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006 (Republic Act 9344)

a “child in conflict with the law” shall be subjected to an intervention program

SITUATIONER
• over 500 children have been transferred from jails to youth homes • over 1,500 criminal cases against young offenders age 15 and below has been dismissed as the law is implemented retroactively

SITUATIONER
• In 2009, the Public Attorney's Office alone has represented and terminated a total of 4,254 cases involving children in conflict with the law

SITUATIONER
• The age of discernment has been raised to 15 years old from nine years old • those 15 to 18 years can now plead for lack of discernment for a criminal act

SITUATIONER
• children (like Leon and Joey) can be exempted from all criminal accountability even for rape and murder cases

WHY?

SITUATIONER
“...recognizes the rights of the child who has breached the law...consistent with the promotion of his or her sense of dignity and worth.”
– The Government of the Republic of the Philippines (as a signatory of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child)

SITUATIONER
these “children in conflict with the law” (CICL) are victims too – influenced by other people and has no capacity to think on their own
– Senator Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan Principal Author, RA 9344

SITUATIONER
These young criminals should be placed under an intervention program

BUT
that program is not yet in place

SITUATIONER
This law does not exempt minors from civil liability.

Do they have the financial capability to compensate their victims?

GOOD

BAD

AMEND OR REPEAL

PROPOSALS
• lower the age condition to 12 years old (this means only young offenders aged 11 and below could not be arrested)

PROPOSALS
• for 10 to 11 years, they can be arrested if they acted with discernment, or they are proven to understand what they are doing, in this case, the crime being committed.

PROPOSALS
• for those aged 12 to 17, they should be prosecuted regardless whether they acted with discernment or not.

PROPOSALS
• 9 years old and below should have the full exemption but they can only be released after undergoing rehabilitation to be facilitated by the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

STAGES OF ADOLESCENCE

• a child is newly concerned with how they appear to others • the child develops a sense of sexual identity

• ponder the roles they will play in the adult world

• apt to experience some role confusion- mixed ideas and feelings

• may experiment with a variety of behaviors and activities • the pupil is in the process of becoming

PHILOSOPHY OF IDEALISM
at birth the pupil is neither good or bad
he is potential and can become either good or bad

PHILOSOPHY OF IDEALISM
ENVIRONMENT

EDUCATION

GOOD OR BAD

SURROUNDING INFLUENCES

OWN WILL

?

TEACHERS ROLE IN DISCIPLINE
• AN INTIMATE PART OF PERSONALITY • A DIRECTIVE ACTIVITY OF THE TEACHER • TEACHER BEING THE PRIMARY ELEMENT

“Authority begins by being external; it is sufficient if it ends, through habitformation and self-control, in becoming internal”.

SCHOOL ADMINISTRATOR’S ROLE
• Building trusting relationships and strong communities • Know and understand the philosophy on how students learn, acquire academic knowledge, build character and grow a positive affective perspective
Restorative Justice in Schools: Building Relationships, Building Communities - Todd Gribbon, Sean Ruddy, Jeff Thornborrow

TRADITIONAL RETRIBUTIVE
(punishment)

to a

RESTORATIVE STYLE
(supportive)

SHIFT THE COMMUNITY (school)

1.focusing on blamefixing to problem solving 2.focusing on the past to focusing on the future

SHIFT THE COMMUNITY (school) 3. focusing on punishment to focusing on repairing harm 4. neglecting victims’ needs to victims’ needs being central

SHIFT THE COMMUNITY (school)
5. neglecting offenders to offenders being given a role 6. neglecting victim-offender relationships to victimoffender relationships being central.

THANK YOU!

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