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NCJ Number: 192853 Find in a Library
Title: Disproportionate Minority Confinement (DMC) of Youth: An Analysis of State and Federal Efforts to Address the Issue
Journal: Crime and Delinquency  Volume:48  Issue:1  Dated:January 2002  Pages:3-45
Author(s): Michael J. Leiber
Date Published: January 2002
Page Count: 43
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined Federal mandates regarding minority overrepresentation in secure juvenile facilities and State efforts to comply with the mandates.
Abstract: The Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act of 1974, as amended, established the mandate in the mid-1990’s for States participating in the Federal Formula Grants Program. The law requires States to determine whether disproportionate minority confinement (DMC) exists in secure facilities, to identify the causes, and to develop and implement corrective strategies. DMC consists of four interrelated states: identification, assessment, intervention, and monitoring. The present research focused on the identification of the extent of minority overrepresentation in States’ juvenile justice systems and assessment of the causes of DMC. The analysis of the assessment stage used information from 43 States and the District of Columbia; the analysis of the assessment studies used information from 40 States. Results revealed that minority youth overrepresentation existed in every State and at all decision points. The decision point where minority youth overrepresentation was greatest varied by State. Overrepresentation existed for Black and Hispanic youths, with greater overrepresentation among African American youth than among Hispanic youth. In addition, 32 of the 40 State studies of the assessment stage revealed race differences not totally explained by differential involvement in crime. Minority overrepresentation resulted solely from legal factors (i.e., severity of the crime) in 12 States. Race and gender interacted in some States to influence decision making even after controlling for legal factors. The analysis concluded that the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention’s (OJJDP) tentative approach to DMC has resulted in significant contributions to understanding of the issues, innovative initiatives in some States to address the issue, and inconsistent implementation of the DMC mandate. However, OJJDP’s recent efforts to address the deficiencies may result in improved information and greater efforts to address DMC. Notes, appended tables, and 76 references (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Juvenile sentencing
Index Term(s): Federal Code; Juvenile inmate statistics; Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act; Juvenile justice reform; Minority juvenile offenders; Minority overrepresentation; Psychiatric testimony; Race-punishment relationship; Regulations compliance; Secure juvenile units/facilities
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