Irish Penal Reform Trust

Irish Examiner: Teens being ‘criminalised’ while in care of the State

7th March 2016

Writing in the Irish Examiner, Jennifer Hough reports that Ireland's "most troubled teenagers are being criminalised while in the care of the State — arrested in the secure therapeutic centres aiming to stabilise and rehabilitate them."

The article details the high proportions of young people in secure care who are picking up criminal charges due to their challenging behaviour. This suggests that current therapeutic interventions are not working, and that Ireland is failing these children who have already suffered the trauma of separation from their families who were unable to care for them.

The article cites Prof Ursula Kilkelly and children’s defence solicitor Gareth Noble, who states clearly: “The criminal justice system should not be used as a substitute for care.”

Read the Irish Examiner article in full here.

Respect for rights in the penal system with prison as a last resort.



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