January 04, 2016
What’s on our radar this week
posted byJuvenile Law Center
Each week, Juvenile Law Center gathers the latest studies, reports, and headlines from around the country. Here’s what we’ve been reading:
Throughout 2015,several legislative advancements have improved the nation’s criminal justice system.New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced a plan to pardon thousands of individuals who were convicted of nonviolent crimes as juveniles.Pennsylvania has joined the national trend of pushing child welfare agencies to find kin for youth in care, with the percentage of Pennsylvania youth in kinship care up 24% since 2012.As the number of children in state care has increased, bothAlaska and Georgiaface a foster care crisis.In Richmond, Virginia, the Law Enforcement Intervention Focused on Education (LIFE) programis moving forward in an attempt to reduce the number of students ending up in jail.The Nevada Supreme Court has ruled that prison terms that amount to life-without-parole sentences for juveniles who have committed crimes other than murder are unconstitutional.A new collection of laws in Illinois aim toreduce the number of juveniles that enter the state’s prison system.In Florida, bills are moving in the House and Senate that would limit the ability of Florida prosecutors to charge juveniles as adult offenders,a legal practice knows as “direct file.” Since the proposal of these bills, the state has experienced a decrease in juvenile arrests.A new report by The Marshall Project has discovered that juvenile life without parole sentences are clustered in a handful of counties nation-wide and that these sentences are disproportionately linked with people of color.Maryland lawmakers have announced a plan forbudget increases, and possible laws, to respond to shortcomings in the state’s education system for juvenile offenders.
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