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NCJ Number: 138734 Find in a Library
Title: Public Policy and the Incarceration of Juveniles: Directions for the 1990's (From Juvenile Justice and Public Policy: Toward a National Agenda, 1992, P 151-164, Ira M Schwartz, ed. -- See NCJ-138726)
Author(s): I M Schwartz; R Van Vleet
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 14
Sponsoring Agency: Macmillan
New York, NY 10010
Sale Source: Macmillan
175 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10010
United States of America
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter explores the potential for reforming youth detention and training school programs and discusses some barriers to such change and how they can be overcome.
Abstract: Although the cost of juvenile detention centers and training schools far outstripped the inflation rate during the 1980's, most States have not made them prime targets for policy and fiscal reforms, despite overall budget restrictions. This is largely because juvenile justice officials who advocate "get-tough" measures as a strategy for responding to the juvenile crime problem are a potent political force. Another barrier to change is that there is little, if any, political capital to be gained by reforming detention and training school systems, particularly compared to the political benefits likely to accrue from promises to reform public education, health care, and services for the elderly. In most instances, if State policymakers would take an objective look at their State and local youth detention and training school systems, they would find them to be costly and ineffective in most instances. Policymakers interested in exploring reform options should commission a study of incarcerated juveniles, become familiar with the research on alternatives to the use of detention centers, become knowledgeable about experiences in reducing detention center and training school populations in other jurisdictions, and explore the potential for redeploying existing resources. 17 references
Main Term(s): Correctional institutions (juvenile); Juvenile detention reform
Index Term(s): Alternatives to institutionalization; Corrections costs
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