The Child Justice Alliance hosted a one-day workshop to sensitize former reform school principals and provincial coordinators on the provisions of sentencing contained within the Child Justice Act. The purpose was to enlighten the CYCC principals on the provisions and to bring them together to provide recommendations on what is needed and how to address there challenges. These recommendations will be presented to the Inter-Sectoral Committee on Child Justice to action.
It was decided in May 2006 by the Child Justice Alliance Driver Group to conduct a second baseline study at Wynberg (Cape Town), Pretoria and Pietermaritzburg courts. Anticipating the problems and challenges experienced in the first baseline study, some aspects of phase two were amended. In order to ensure a fair degree of comparability between the two data sets, much of the methodology employed was the same as that of phase one. The scope of the research was aimed at monitoring the current practice of the criminal justice system in relation to children, in order to obtain baseline information regarding the management of child offenders in the criminal justice system.
During its development the Child Justice Bill underwent a cost-effectiveness analysis (see Barberton et al 1999 and Barberton 2001). The analysis compared the cost of the current system to the management of children through the different stages of the proposed Bill. In costing the Bill, Barberton (1999) provided three scenarios which described different levels of implementation of the Bill. Overall, the analysis showed that government as a whole would benefit from substantial savings when the Bill is fully implemented, although the Department of Justice and the South African Police Service (SAPS) would spend additional funds to what they are currently spending. The summary to follow is sourced from Department of Justice and Constitutional Development et al (2002).
This research report constitutes an attempt at obtaining baseline data on the present criminal justice system as it pertains to children in three magisterial districts, namely, Wynberg in the Western Cape, Pretoria in Gauteng and Pietermaritzburg in Kwa Zulu-Natal. It is intended to form the basis of on-going monitoring research that will examine the implementation of the Child Justice Act, once enacted, in that it represents the first phase of a larger monitoring study.