Youth Justice

The Youth Criminal Justice Act applies to youth in Canada who are 12 – 17 years old. It outlines how police, diversions programs, the court system and the corrections system will respond to a youth who is accused or found guilty of breaking the law.

Gathered on this page is a sample of resources related to youth criminal justice. But there may be other youth-focused and general audience resources that are also appropriate for your situation. See the topic: Youth criminal justice


CPLEA Suggested Resources

Not sure where to begin finding answers to your questions. Get started with our suggested resources. See additional resources below for more information.

These FAQs are provided by the Canadian Legal FAQs, a website of the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta. They provide answers to questions about the Criminal Code of Canada. On this page you will find general information FAQs on the Code, shoplifting, and joyriding.

Related legal topic(s): Crimes and offences, Criminal law general resources, Criminal records and pardons, Youth criminal justice

These "How old do I have to be?" FAQs are provided by the Canadian Legal FAQs, a website of the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta. They provide answers for youth about age-related issues under various topics: family, criminal, medical and health related, legal and financial, activities (such as driving), school and work.

Related legal topic(s): Adoption, Bullying, Common law relationships, Divorce and separation, Drugs and alcohol, Guardianship and trusteeship, Health issues, Landlord and tenant, Marriage, Wills and estates, Youth criminal justice

Alberta Resources

A comic book produced by the BearPaw Education (NCSA), Breachis an entertaining look at a serious topic - breach charges and administration of justice. This youth-oriented resource aims to reinforce the importance of following court orders by explaining the consequences of breaching such orders as well as the benefits of following them.

Related legal topic(s): Aboriginal law, Administration of justice, Classroom materials, Legal process

The Calgary Youth Justice Society, through a community-development approach, contributes to the success of Youth Justice Committees by providing fundamental support through public awareness, resources, training and guidance. They provide support and leadership to communities who are interested in establishing a Youth Justice Committee.
Related legal topic(s): Restorative justice, Youth criminal justice

The Edmonton Youth Justice is focused on youth and the early community intervention of young offenders or youth who are at risk of offending. They focus on restorative justice measures between the offender and the victim, as well as a focus on extra-judicial measures. They do this through the work of three youth justice committees in the City of Edmonton.

Related legal topic(s): Restorative justice, Youth criminal justice

In Edmonton and Calgary, young persons who are charged with criminal offences are referred by the Legal Aid Society of Alberta to the Youth Criminal Defence Office (YCDO). The YCDO operates under the supervision of a Senior Counsel who is hired by and reports to the Board of Directors of the Legal Aid Society. The YCDO also employs a number of lawyers in Calgary and Edmonton. Social workers, youth workers and administrative staff support the lawyers.

Related legal topic(s): Legal aid, Youth criminal justice

The Youth Restorative Action Project is a Youth Justice Committee sanctioned under the new Youth Criminal Justice Act. It is the first YJC mandated to work in youth court with young people who have caused harm as a result of hate crimes and significant social issues YRAP is also the first such committee to be comprised entirely of Youth Members, and takes a unique approach to achieving the goals of Restorative Justice. YRAP also collaborates on projects promoting justice equality and rights for all youth, particularly youth at risk and new Canadians.
Related legal topic(s): Restorative justice, Youth criminal justice

Canada/Federal

This online publication produced by the John Howard Society of Alberta covers the following topics: Purpose and principles; Legal rights; Extrajudicial measures; Youth justice committees; Conferences; Classification of offences; and Youth Court. Visuals include a flowchart of the case process and a diagram of youth court. Also available as a PDF download.

Related legal topic(s): Youth criminal justice

The youth justice system affects individuals between the ages of 12 and 17 who get into trouble with the law. The goal of the Department of Justice is to ensure a fair and effective youth justice system. This website provides information on the Youth Criminal Justice Act and links to tools and resources for the classroom.

Related legal topic(s): Classroom materials, Youth criminal justice

This Department of Justice Canada resource outlines the different rules that apply to youth records. It discusses issues such as when the record will be destroyed, who has access to the file, the impact it may have on work and travel and information about getting a pardon. There is also a chart outlining when, or if, the record will be destroyed. Also may be downloaded as a PDF.

Related legal topic(s): Criminal records and pardons, Youth criminal justice