Philosophicaland Practical Approach for Balancing Issues

Philosophicaland Practical Approach for Balancing Issues

Ethicsis an important aspect of the juvenile justice system. It is ofimportance for any individual working in juvenile justice to haveethical standards of conduct that will guide his choices anddecisions in a difficult situation. Besides, it is important to havea personal moral philosophy in the workplace. This is because thejuvenile justice professionals often deal with young offenders andcriminals, which means they might have to face conflicts of ethicalprinciples in their work. The purpose of this paper is to createa philosophy and approach for balancing the issues of individualrights and public`s protection,balancing the use of immoral means to accomplish desirableobjectives, and a recommendation of ways of using ethics indecision-making about the emerging issues in juvenile justice.

IndividualRights and the Public’s Protection

Juvenilejustice professional ought to balance peace, order and publicprotection with maintaining individual rights (Souryal, 2010). Inthis context, I base my argument on a combination of utilitariantheory and deontology. I revolve around the principle that agovernment can limit individual freedom to promote the commonwelfare, to protect citizens and to ensure peace and order. However,if it’s not certain whether the social order will be affected, theutilitarian approach comes in handy to weigh the balance of positiveand negative consequences. An example would be where someone isperforming actions that might lead to terrorist acts. It would bejustified to limit the rights of the individual and to request tostop the measures for the aim of protecting the public.

TheUse of Immoral Means to Accomplish Desirable Ends

Oneethical issue that can be noted in the juvenile justice is theso-called &quotDirty Harry problem.&quot This is a moral issuewhere the juvenile justice professionals use immoral means toaccomplish desirable ends (Regoli,Hewitt, &amp DeLisi, 2012).In many cases, it is not possible to resolve this problem by usingproper ways, and this is why the juvenile justice professionals findit necessary to use bribes and to lie so that they can be able tostop juvenile offenders or to deter crimes from happening.Furthermore, it might not be possible to resist criminals withoutresorting to immoral means (Regoli,Hewitt, &amp DeLisi, 2012).For example, the juvenile justice professionals might bribe personsto gain information about a particular criminal. On the other hand,the use of immoral means to accomplish desires would place thejuvenile justice professionals in a similar position with thecriminals. This would provide an ethical dilemma for the juvenilejustice practitioners.

Inthis case, the ethical choices for this dilemma would be where theends and failing to reach these ends are unquestionably desirableand where there is no effective way of achieving the ends by the useof only moral means (Regoli,Hewitt, &amp DeLisi, 2012).It would also be a dilemma where the ends are so urgent that if thejuvenile justice professionals do not use all the available ways toachieve the ends, it would be deemed as immoral. The first conditionwould be deontological principles while the second and third stateswould be utilitarian principles. I, therefore, believe that it wouldbe admissible to use immoral means to accomplish desirable ends for ajuvenile justice professional.

UsingEthics in Decision-making in Juvenile justice

Thereare four key theories of normative ethics that should be taken intoaccount by juvenile justice professionals. They include theutilitarian ethics, deontology, the virtue ethics and the justiceethics (Norrie,2014).Ideally, they provide a background for ethical decision-making, whichcan be useful in complex situations in juvenile justice. First, thejuvenile justice professionals should follow key deontologicalprinciples, for instance, the primacy of law, and the importance ofprotecting social order. These principles would be resourceful, forexample, in situations where there is a conflict between individualrights and public protection. This would be a situation where Ibelieve the law enforcement agencies would be required to use ethicsof care.

Second,the utilitarian approach would come in handy in situations whereother approaches seem to fail, as they would provide a solution orthey would also be resourceful in situations where other approachesproduce inefficient decisions (Norrie,2014).Ideally, the utilitarian view could be used to assess the use ofimmoral means to accomplish desirable ends if the juvenile justiceprofessional making the decision has enough information to be able toevaluate the consequences of his actions. They should, therefore,determine whether the immoral means would cause harm to individuals.This would also be a situation where the law enforcement agencieswould be required to use ethics of care.

Finally,the utilitarian approach would be efficient for balancing reward andpunishment. The utilitarian approach to punishment would deter crimeor reduce the chances of it happening (Norrie,2014).In addition, the utilitarian view would be efficient for designingrewards and for motivating the juvenile justice professionals. Theserecommendations can be applied by juvenile justice professionals whenthey have to make decisions in the presence of ethical dilemmas asthey would enable them exercise ethics of care and maintain socialorder.

Inconclusion, the juvenile justice professionals ought to exerciseethics at their workplace. In particular, they should use deontologypractices to help them make decisions in complex situations. Wherethere exist conflicts between individual rights and publicprotection, the utilitarian theory would be useful.


Norrie,A. (2014). Practical reasoning and juvenile responsibility: Ajurisprudential approach.&nbspTheReasoning Criminal: Rational Choice Perspectives on Offending,217. Retrieved on 12 December 2016.

Regoli,R. M., Hewitt, J. D., &amp DeLisi, M. (2012).&nbspDelinquencyin society.Jones &amp Bartlett Publishers. Retrieved on 12 December 2016 from–ZYRWkC&ampredir_esc=y

Souryal,S. S. (2010).&nbspEthicsin juvenile justice: In search of the truth.Routledge. Retrieved on 12 December 2016.