Student researcher

Dr Kamarah Pooley Research Leader

This PhD project involves conducting research into Youth Misuse of Fire (YMF) prevention in New South Wales (NSW).  Youth misuse of fire (YMF) is a multifaceted, complex, and covert behaviour which has the potential to cause property damage, injury, or death. It thus represents a substantive community concern. The reduction of YMF relies heavily on preventative initiatives which are increasingly becoming the responsibility of fire and rescue services. In New South Wales (NSW), tertiary prevention of youth misuse of fire is facilitated through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed by the NSW Department of Juvenile Justice and Fire and Rescue NSW. This MOU provides the framework for firefighter participation in Youth Justice Conferencing convened for young people who have committed a fire-related offence. Despite an increased reliance on this MOU, Youth Justice Conferencing (YJC) for YMF has not been independently empirically evaluated. Instead, the program relies on theoretical constructs and generalisations to justify its capacity to target and reduce misuse of fire by young people. Where public policy formulation requires an evidence-base on which to inform program development and modification, this reliance on theory alone exists in stark contrast to best practice. To fill this void within existing literature, an empirical evaluation of YJC for YMF in NSW will be conducted. Informed by a broad post-positivist approach, strategic, metric, and methodological triangulation will be utilised to conduct a comprehensive evaluation which overcomes many of the limitations identified within existing studies. A theory approach logic model will provide the framework for the evaluation to ensure that the program’s context, theoretical constructs, factors, activities, outputs, outcomes, and impact are examined. Findings will contribute significantly to existing literature and the formulation of policy and practice, on a macro and micro level.

Kamarah Pooley Conference Poster 2016
12 Aug 2016
(How) do interagency agreements between juvenile justice and fire and rescue services facilitate youth misuse...
An evaluation of youth justice conferencing for youth misuse of fire
29 Jun 2017
This evaluation revealed that firefighter involvement in Youth Justice Conferencing:Facilitates the provision...