Examining the utility of pre-charge youth diversion programs: a Canadian context
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Despite the perceived benefits of pre-charge diversion programs, some researchers contend that programs based on police selection may suffer from selection bias. Critics have also argued that diversion programs are being used as a coercive tool to expand the number of youth into the justice system. Using police data from a local police service (N= 6479) in Ontario Canada, this thesis conducts a bivariate analysis to explore the personal characteristics of youth and attempts to determine the probability of being charged or diverted for minor youth offences. Results suggest implementation of the formal pre-charge diversion program had an impact on the police service‘s charging decisions.