THE Judiciary





CHILDREN COURT USERS COMMITTEE (CCUC)





GUIDELINES FOR ESTABLISHMENT OF CHILDREN COURT USERS COMMITTEE

Core values and objectives

a)    Collective responsibility: as each stakeholder or agency bears equal responsibility for the successes and failure of the committee;

b)    Interdependence: as agencies depend on each other for operation of the committee.

c)    Service : as stakeholders are bound by the recognition that the committee is about quality service delivery to the children;

d)    Constitutionalism:  as actors have to be guided by strict fidelity to the constitution of Kenya and the principles espoused therein;

e)    Mutual Accountability: as all stakeholders are accountable to each other and must perform their obligations within the committees.

The CCUC overall objectives is to streamline the administration of juvenile justice within the respective courts’ jurisdiction.

 Specific objectives include:

a)    to ensure an accountable,coordinated,efficient,effective and consultative approach in the delivery of justice;

b)    to improve access to justice and the quality of service delivery by all actors in the juvenile justice system;

c)    to enhance public participation and engagement in the delivery of justice;

d)    to promote information sharing and learning among stakeholders;

e)    to strengthen feedback mechanisms and promote dialogue among stakeholders and court users;

f)     to propose policies and legislations for implementation by the NCAJ for effective delivery of justice i.e. Bond and Bail police/ sentencing  policies /special working Groups on Children Piloting CCUC to deal with issues around JJS;

g)    To carry out all of the functions that are incidental to the operations of the committees.

 

 Functions and scope OF CCUC:

                               I.        To safeguard the welfare and the best interest of children within the justice system as provided in the Constitution, Children Act and other laws.

                             II.        Implement policies and strategies of the NCAJ;

                            III.        Identify challenges that hinder the expeditious delivery of juvenile justice, propose and effect solutions such as annual children service week among others;

                           IV.        Serve as platform for promoting the establishment of peer review mechanisms among participating stakeholders;

                            V.        Enhance information sharing and learning among stakeholders;

                           VI.        Identify needs of various agencies for intervention by the NCAJ;

                          VII.        Propose relevant stakeholder training on the relevant fields of concern  to the NCAJ;

                        VIII.        Propose policy and legislative intervention to the NCAJ for the effective and expeditious disposal of cases;

                           IX.        Organize and hold annual open days and execute outreach programmes focused on child protection;

                            X.        Hold fact finding missions to child protection units and holding facilities for children including remand homes,Borstal institutions, rehabilitation schools, psychiatric Hospitals, probation Hostels and any place of detention including hospitals and make recommendations to relevant stakeholders and NCAJ;

                           XI.        Produce reports on any committee events and visits held;

                          XII.        Engage agencies responsible for rehabilitative services for children from street life, drug/substance abuse and child abuse/exploitation.

                        XIII.         Promote alternative dispute resolution in accordance with the provision of Article 159 of the Constitution;

 

Steps to be undertaken to implement the Children CUC

 The CUC guidelines allow for the formation of specialized CUCs to serve the peculiar needs of such courts. In constituting such committees, the heads of Children’s courts map out stakeholders as per the guidelines and invite them for a meeting to explain the objectives of the committee. Then, this is followed up by a resolution to establish the committee. Once formed, through its chairperson, the committee will then notify the NCAJ who coordinates the CUCs at a national level. Some court stations have the CCUC as a sub-committee of the main CUC.

 

Performance indicators of CCUC:

a)    Reduced trial period from date of taking the plea to the time of judgment delivery;

b)    Increase in number of subjects/minors released on bond;

c)    Reduction in period taken to execute warrant of arrest and witness summons by the police;

d)    Increase in number of people coming to court to seek services;

e)    Reduction of complaints from the public, litigants and subjects/minors in remand institutions, and /or containment centers;

f)     Significant reduction in the number of pending cases involving children.

Members of the children CUC

  1. Head of station
  2. Children court Magistrates
  3. Children officer
  4. Probation
  5. Prison
  6. remand homes
  7. Police
  8. Office of the Director of public Prosecution
  9. LSK representative
  10. Advocate representative from court station
  11. Legal aid committee representative
  12. Medical officer of health (MOH)
  13. County government representative
  14. CCIs representative
  15. Witness Protection Agency
  16. CSOs dealing with children
  17. KNCHR
  18. FBOs
  19. Community representative
  20. Any other member as may be co-opted by the committee.

 

Officials

Chair- Judiciary

Deputy chair- Probation

Secretary- Children department

Treasurer-Executive officer of the station

 

Meetings

The Children CUC shall hold regular quarterly meetings

The Children CUC may have special meetings if need arises.

 

 

 

 

 



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