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Synopsis

This book provides an empirically grounded, theoretically informed account of recent changes to the youth justice system in England and Wales, focusing on the introduction of elements of restorative justice into the heart of the criminal justice system, and the implementation of referral orders and youth offender panels. Taken together, this amounts to the most radical overhaul of the youth justice system in the last half century, fundamentally changing the underlying values of the system away from an 'exclusionary punitive justice' and towards an 'inclusionary restorative justice'. The book explores the implications of these changes by using the lens of a detailed study of the implementation of referral orders and youth offender panels to explore wider issues about youth justice policy and the integration of restorative justice principles. It draws upon the findings of an in-depth study of the pilots established prior to the national rollout of referral orders in April 2002. The book will be essential reading not only for those involved in the task of implementing the new youth justice, but others with an interest in the criminal justice system and in restorative justice who need to know about the far reaching reforms to the youth justice system and their impact.

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