This report provides a clear blueprint for closing youth prisons and replacing them with community-based juvenile justice services. Readers will learn how this new system can hold youth accountable — without resorting to incarceration — while cultivating a young person’s strengths, interests and sense of belonging.
The youth prison model? It’s past its expiration date
Findings & Stats
Young Ladies, Beware
Girls who enter the juvenile justice system — and particularly those who are incarcerated in youth prisons — have overwhelmingly experienced multiple and persistent trauma, including staggeringly high rates of early sexual abuse.
Envisioning a Better Option
Readers will learn seven guiding principles to keep in mind when developing a full community-based continuum of care for justice involved youth. One example? Shift from a slot-based system to a needs-based one.
Steps for Change
This report shares eight steps for developing a community-based continuum of care. Step no. 1: Establish a sense of urgency. Reject youth prisons as the best way to aid youth and achieve public safety.
Statements & Quotations
A true and robust continuum of care for high-risk youth in the juvenile justice system will vary from community to community.
Far too often, young people — especially those with mental or behavioral health diagnoses or struggling with addiction - are sent to facilities simply because services to help them in the community do not exist.