Make Training Police on Juvenile Justice, Youth Interaction a National Priority

Our study of academy training programs, If Not Now, When? A Survey of Juvenile Justice Training in American Police Academies, indicates that less than 1 percent of police academy trainings make mention of juvenile justice issues. There is no “in-service” training for officers. Training that does exist is focused only on juvenile law.

There is no training for law enforcement on how to communicate with teens, or how to understand the way that teens perceive authority. Most academies do not address law enforcement agencies’ legal obligation to address disproportionate minority contact.

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Los Angeles to Reduce Arrest Rates in Schools

After years of arresting students for on-campus fights and damaging school property, Los Angeles school officials are adopting new policies to reduce the number of students who are disciplined  in the juvenile court system.

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Parental incarceration can be worse for a child than divorce or death of a parent

With more than 2 million people behind bars, the U.S. has the highest incarceration rate in the world. This mass incarceration has serious implications for not only the inmates, but their children, finds a new University of California-Irvine study. The study found significant health problems, including behavioral issues, in children of incarcerated parents and also that, for some types of health outcomes, parental incarceration can be more detrimental to a child’s well-being than divorce or the death of a parent.

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New Reports Provide Road Map to Reduce Juvenile Recidivism

Two reports from the Council of State Governments Justice Center offer recommendations for how state and local governments can improve outcomes for youth in the juvenile justice system.

To access the Roadmap to Improved Outcomes report and article click here

To access an interactive data visualization entitled Measuring Juvenile Recidivism click here

The Myth of Juvenile Crime in the Summer

Do we, as adults and as a culture, get just a little bit nervous when we see groups of kids out and about in the summer, hanging around, doing not much of anything?

We don’t know for sure that summer crime waves even exist. In fact, recent reporting states, “Crime does not spike when temperatures begin to sizzle. Rather, police in the Baltimore and Washington corridor say there is a seasonal shift in the type of criminal acts being committed.” In other words, there is a shift to behaviors like vandalism, bicycle theft, breaking into unlocked cars and crimes of opportunity.  The data show that millions of young people across race and social classes engage in these types of activities, and that when young people are connected to school, work and meaningful relationships, they will move past these misbehaviors.

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Pew Convenes Juvenile Justice Leaders

Teams of policymakers and stakeholders from 10 states convened in July for a juvenile corrections conference with The Pew Charitable Trusts’ public safety performance project. Attendees learned about recent comprehensive reforms in Kentucky and Hawaii and explored opportunities for policy change in their states.

To see how Hawaii has accelerated shifts to juvenile justice practices click here

To see how Kentucky has been picking community options over correctional facilities click here