What is the YCJA?
The Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA) is a law designed for youth aged 12 to 17 who have committed an offence under the Criminal Code or other federal statutes. The purpose of this act is to raise awareness among young people by encouraging them to repair the harm done to the victim or to the community. It involves different actors, including parents, and aims to rehabilitate and reintegrate youth
It aims to provide, “the right measure, at the right time, for the right young person”.
L'Alternative Outaouais’s socio-judicial stakeholders support adolescents through 3 types of arrangements:
They are discretionary and are reserved for minor non-violent offences. The police officer may, among other things, propose to the young person to take part in awareness activities or carry out community work. This type of measure does not lead to a judicial case ;
They are determined by the Provincial Director and enforced by youth delegates from the Outaouais Integrated Health and Social Services Center (OIHSSC). This provision consolidates victim and community remedies and outreach activities. It does not lead to a judicial record;
They are ordered by a judge of the Youth Chamber, also called «specific sentences.» This provision is similar to extrajudicial sanctions but results in a judicial record.
Alternative Outaouais also has the mandate to regulate compensatory work measures. This type of application comes from the municipal court when a youth is unable to pay a fine and voluntarily agrees to compensate by performing unpaid work hours for the benefit of a non-profit organization.