No Place for Kids

The Case for Reducing Juvenile Incarceration

Posted October 4, 2011
By the Annie E. Casey Foundation
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AECF No Placefor Kids Cover 2011


Backed with an array of research, the case against America’s youth prisons and correctional training schools can be neatly summarized in five words: dangerous, ineffective, unnecessary, wasteful and inadequate. This report highlights successful reform efforts from several states and provides recommendations for how states can reduce juvenile incarceration rates and redesign their juvenile correction systems to better serve young people and the public.

In addition to the full report, the Foundation published a No Place for Kids issue brief and a news release. As a supplement to the report, find state-level data on juvenile confinement in the Finding & Stats section below.

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations

Key Takeaway

States are spending vast sums of taxpayer money on incarceration when nonresidential options deliver equal or better results

According to the American Correctional Association, the average daily cost nationwide to incarcerate one juvenile offender in 2008 was $240. That translates to an average cost of $66,000-$88,000 for 9-12 months ... many times the cost of tuition and fees at a public four-year university or a two-year community or technical college.