oa De Rebus - Reform, reintegrate, rehabilitate - balancing restorative justice and juvenile offender rehabilitation : feature
The introduction of the Child Justice Act 75 of 2008 (the Act) set new standards for the protection of the child offender by establishing the Child Justice Court. Flowing from the juvenile justice reforms is the principle of restorative justice entrenched by the Act in the criminal justice system with respect to children who are in conflict with the law. One of the primary objects of the Act articulated in s 2(c), is to provide special treatment of children in the justice system. It is designed to break the cycle of crime and promote safe communities by encouraging re-socialisation and re-education programmes for juvenile offenders as held by the court in S v FM (Centre for Child Law as Amicus Curiae) 2013 (1) SACR 57 (GNP) at para 28. Key international instruments - such as Article 17.3 of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child - provide that the essential aim of treatment of every child offender shall be his or her reformation, reintegration into his or her family and social rehabilitation.
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