Mediation in Juvenile Cases Brings Family Restoration

Juvenile crime peaked in the 1980’s and continues to be a problem in the caseload of the courts. Many juvenile, cases, are ripe for mediation and parental involvement, however, argues Jennifer Kornman, in her recent article on the topic. Mediation could solve case expense as well as judicial overloading of the juvenile court system, and could be a very viable alternative to restore kids to their families.

In her article she states, "In many cases of delinquent juveniles the children are just acting as kids, not realizing the repercussions of their actions. A conflict arises in their life and the juveniles don’t know how to handle it so they lash out in the 'improper' way. This is not to excuse their actions, but twenty years ago most of these cases wouldn’t have even have made it into the courtroom. These children don’t need to be labeled delinquents; rather they need to gain the skills of working through their problems without violence."

Children are by definition immature and therefore should receive more leniency and help than an adult. Juveniles require skills that will continue through their entire life rather than labeling the juveniles as delinquents and having them have self-fulfilling prophecies of delinquency. To save children from being dragged through the court system and being labeled as “delinquent” children who have been accused of minor misdemeanors (mainly assault and battery or status offense ), children should go through mediation rather than through adjudication, argues Kornman. Her article walks through the definition and purpose of mediation, how mediation is used in divorce settlements and the shortcomings of mediation when domestic violence is involved, how mediation is used with children, how Lucas County Ohio has tried to solve the problem, and what courts should start mandating for children when they come through the court system.

Mediation has been emerging as an efficient and cost effective solution to the large caseload that courts must face within the last twenty years, and Kornman's article applies that process to the important area of juvenile crime - an excellent path toward family restoration.

Read the entire article here.

1 comment:

  1. Family Law is ripe for mediation. While court tends to wedge a divide between families, mediation can serve as a building block to mend the problems that a family faces. Mediation allows for the parties to discuss the issues they are facing while using their lawyers for problem solving and creative solutions. If an attorney truly desires to make a difference, I encourage that person to become trained in mediation and to use it as often as possible.