n Africa Insight - Rehabilitation of youth offenders in South Africa : the relevance of ecological model and graduated sanctions

Volume 41, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 0256-2804


Youth violence is a South African societal problem threatening the well-being of families and communities throughout the country. In 2009, a quarter of the sentenced offenders in public and private correctional facilities was the youth, an increase from 26 275 in 2006 to 33 796 in 2009. The high recidivism rate of youth offenders illustrates the need to develop comprehensive and effective interventions for them and their families. Although rehabilitation is a focus intervention for the incarcerated youth, it is often unclear how it works; this article discusses the ecological perspective and graduated sanctions as an intervention strategy that may have significant impact on transforming juvenile offenders into law-abiding citizens.

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