Report Lauds State’s Effort To Reduce Incarceration Of Youths

Connecticut has become a national leader in a “critical but quiet revolution” in policies to reduce youth incarceration, according to a report released Tuesday by the National Juvenile Justice Network and the Texas Public Policy Foundation. The report identifies Connecticut as one of nine states that have led the nation in reducing youth incarceration by adopting policies that support and encourage alternatives. According to the report, youth incarceration in Connecticut declined by 50 percent from 2001 to 2010, reflecting a nationwide shift away from what the authors say was an over-reliance on youth confinement in the 1980s and 1990s. The report credits Connecticut with developing a network of community-based services for young offenders and high-risk youths; placing new restrictions on the ability of law enforcement to commit a child to secure detention; reducing the number of state detention centers; and working to reduce school-based arrests. From 1985 to 2000, the number of youths confined in public facilities in Connecticut increased 37 percent, from 202 to 276, according to the report.

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