Department of Juvenile Justice established

Minister of Home Affairs, Sheikh Imran Abdullah | Photo: Twitter

Male’, Maldives – Minister of Home Affairs Imran Abdulla said today, that the establishment of the Department of Juvenile Justice is an important step in saving children exposed to crime.

In a Tweet earlier today, Minister Imran said today that the Juvenile Justice Act has started to be enacted, and that the establishment of a new Department of Juvenile Justice inaugurated today, can potentially save children exposed to a lifestyle of crime early on.

The Juvenile Justice Act was formulated so that, to ensure that children receive support to stay away from further crime and receive rehabilitative care in a friendly environment, allowing them to return to the community as a functioning member, should they be found to have committed a crime. This Act also includes policies which will lead to the establishment of a dedicated juvenile justice system for children.

The Juvenile Justice Act clearly states that an institution under the Ministry responsible for declaring that children over the age of 15 are responsible for their criminal behavior, must establish a Department of Juvenile Justice, along with the roles and responsibilities of the Department.

The Juvenile Justice Act was ratified along with amendments to the Child Rights Protection Act on 20th November, 2019. The Juvenile Justice Act outlines the rights of children and adolescents coming in conflict with the law, or immersed in cycles of violence, juvenile delinquency and means to prevent juvenile delinquencies.

Along with the Department of Juvenile Justice, the bill also directs the constitution of designated State Prosecutors for children; a particular unit of probation and correctional officers; a juvenile diversion programme; rehabilitation programmes; and residential facilities and correctional centres.