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“Tough on Crime?” How information shapes public support for the Children’s Court Drug Court

Diversion from the Criminal Justice System is the preferred outcome for young offenders. However, departure from traditional punishment is often unpopular with the public who have the ability to influence political agendas and funding. ‘Opinion’ data is usually collected from an ill-informed public who are subsequently labelled as punitive. To examine support for the Children’s Court Drug Court a mixed methods approach was utilised to survey public opinion (n=304) or interview (n=60) participants. The findings indicate with accurate information, the study participants from the public were supportive of the CCDC option, and less concerned with punitive, ‘tough on crime’ approaches.

Funding agency

ECU – Industry Collaboration Grant

Project duration

January 2015 - December 2016

Presentations

  • McCue, J. (2016). Overcoming the Challenges of Research Young People in the Criminal Justice System. From Evidence to Practice: The 2nd Australasian Youth Justice Conference. Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, 13 - 15 September 2016.
  • Gately, N., Ellis, S., McCue, J., & Horrigan, A. (2016). Opinions of the WA Children’s Court Drug Court (CCDC): They are not what you think! From Evidence to Practice: The 2nd Australasian Youth Justice Conference. Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, 13 - 15 September 2016.
  • Gately, N., Ellis, S., McCue, J., & Horrigan, A. (2017). “Tough on Crime?” How information shapes public support for the Children’s Court Drug Court. Youth Justice (in review).

Researchers

Dr Natalie Gately
Ms Suzanne Ellis
Dr James McCue

In collaboration with Magistrate Horrigan, Judge Reynolds and the Children’s Court of Western Australia

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