Detective Shane Miller Youth Programs Coordinator
Community-based alternative addressing less serious crimes committed by young people
In June 2015 the Toronto Police Services Board requested the Toronto Police Service (TPS) to create and implement a city-wide pre-charge diversion program in keeping with the Extra Judicial Measures provisions as set out in Sub-Section 6(1), of the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA) and in accordance with the principles set out in Section 4 and the objectives set out in Section 5, of the YCJA.
Pre-Charge Diversion Programs are a community-based alternative to addressing less serious incidents of crime reported to police such as: shoplifting, minor assault and mischief; committed by young people 12 and 17 years-old. Their purpose is not only to reduce the amount of young people entering the justice system, but to provide meaningful intervention at critical times of their lives.
The Youth Programs Coordinator partnered with the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS) to develop the TPS program.
On June 19, 2017 the TPS launched the centralized Youth Pre-Charge Diversion Program (YPDP). It is managed by the Toronto Police Service Youth Programs Coordinator.
Prior to 2017, Many Divisions in Toronto did not had any formal Diversion Programs. Having this YPDP centralized in Toronto allows the Toronto Police Service to deliver a standard centralized program that is designed to benefit all of Toronto youth equally. In cooperation with our partners at the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS), youth involved in the YPDP are referred to programs within the community where they reside.
The goals of the YPDP align with the goals set out in the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA)
They enable early intervention with youth
They make it possible for the community at large to play an important role in the development of community-based responses to youth crime
They increased use of non-judicial interventions
They improve the response to less serious youth crime
They enable the courts to focus on more serious criminal cases