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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 77259 Find in a Library
Title: Questions and Answers Concerning Proposed Amendment on Removal of Juveniles From Adult Jails and Lockups
Author(s): C P Smith
Corporate Author: US Dept of Justice
Law Enforcement Assistance Admin
National Institute for Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention
American Justice Institute
National Juvenile Justice System Assessment Ctr
United States of America
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 9
Sponsoring Agency: American Justice Institute
Sacramento, CA 95814
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
US Dept of Justice
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Questions and answers are provided concerning a proposed amendment to the 1974 Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act; the amendment would require removal of juveniles from adult jails and lockups.
Abstract: The amendment was proposed in March 1980 by the U.S. Department of Justice. Answers to the questions were developed through a review of data and literature available to the National Juvenile Justice System Assessment Center of the American Justice Institute. According to the 1978 National Jail Census, 1,611 juveniles were being held in jail on the day the jail census was taken. Average stay in jail was 4.8 days. An estimated 588,015 juveniles were placed in adult lockups in 1978 in the 41 States which also placed juveniles in adult jails for periods over 48 hours. Several data sources indicate that only a small percentage of juveniles in adult jails were charged with serious offenses against persons. Among the adverse effects of incarceration in adult lockups are a high suicide rate; physical, mental, and sexual assault; inadequate care and programming; negative labeling; and exposure to serious offenders and mental patients. Some States restrict or prohibit the housing of juveniles in increase costs in comparison to the present system but would cost less than continuation of current jailing practices. The amendment is supported by such groups as the National Association of Counties, the American Correctional Association, the National Center for State Courts, and the American Public Health Association. Although many States are not complying with the present law's requirement of no regular contact between juveniles and adults, the amendment is needed because the current separation provision may be causing as many problems as solutions, particularly in small adult jails or lockups. In addition, the cost of separation may be as high as that of removal, although the benefits are fewer. Eleven references are listed.
Index Term(s): Correctional institutions (adult); Jails; Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act; Juveniles in adult facilities; Legislation
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