In the most recent fiscal year for which statistics are available, the proportion of youths found guilty by the youth court is even higher. Canada -wide (including the two Territories as well as Ontario and P. E. I.), 34% of youth cases where there was a finding of guilt resulted in custody. In Newfoundland, 37% of youth cases with at least one conviction ended in a custodial disposition and in Alberta, 28% ended in a sentence to either secure or open custody. Data for the fiscal year 1997/98 are presented in Table 7; however, these data include offenders over the previous maximum age under the JDA as well as provinces excluded by Markwart, so a direct comparison with Markwart’s data is not possible. These data are significant in that they reveal the variation in use of custody dispositions across Canada. Youths convicted of an offence who reside in Ontario, the Yukon, the Northwest Territories and Prince Edward Island are more likely than those in other regions to serve time in custody. Of note, also, is the number of youth cases resulting in custody in Ontario (10,990) compared to those in Quebec (2,561). More youth cases in Ontario resulted in custody than the total number of youth cases with convictions in Quebec (8,861). This is somewhat surprising, given that the populations of the two provinces are similar.


Table 7. Youth custody cases by province, 1997/98

Province

Total convicted

Total custody

% custody

British Columbia

9,082

3,007

33

Alberta

11,594

3,236

28

Manitoba

4,173

1,277

31

Nova Scotia

2,523

796

30

Newfoundland

1,755

657

37

New Brunswick

2,005

602

30

Québec

8,861

2,561

29

Saskatchewan

6,415

2,084

32

Ontario

27,033

10,990

41

P. E. I.

328

177

54

N. W. T.

462

172

37

Yukon

297

138

46

Source: Youth Court Survey, 1997/98 (cited by CCJS, 1999c).


line
Back Table of Contents Next