The Gateway Initiative
The Gateway Initiative is a program delivered in partnership with the Calgary Police Service and The City of Calgary – Calgary Neighborhoods, designed to connect police, youth, their families, and community agencies. The Gateway Initiative is designed to intervene with youth aged 12 to 17, who commit a first or second-time minor, non-violent, chargeable offence. The youth must accept responsibility for the offence and be willing to participate in the program.
This initiative offers quick access to effective intervention for youth and allows police and court resources to focus on more serious crime. The Gateway Initiative addresses the causes of crime at both the individual and community level and provides youth and families with access to community resources.
The Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA) places an increased emphasis on the ability for police to use discretion when encountering youth. The legislation also aims to reduce the number of youths entering the formal justice system. The Gateway Initiative is an “extrajudicial measures” program under Section 6 of the YCJA.
The Gateway Initiative is one of many steps in the youth diversion continuum. Youth diversion coordinators work closely with the Calgary Youth Justice Society around diversion of youth for more serious offences that require extrajudicial sanctions under the YCJA.