System Reforms to Reduce Youth Incarceration: Why We Must Explore Every Option Before Removing Any Young Person from Home

This report highlights the importance of reducing the juvenile legal system’s reliance on incarceration by calling for systems reform that centers alternative-to-incarceration programs, adolescent development research, and evidence-based approaches. Highlighting successful state and local laws as well as policies and practices from across the country, the report offers examples of reforms like prohibiting the use of incarceration for certain offenses, redirecting savings from decarceration to state alternative-to-incarceration programs, ending the use incarceration for probation violations, and convening multi-system meetings to explore every other alternative to incarceration before institutionalizing a young person. Youth advocates can advance decarceration efforts in their communities using the examples in this report.   

File Type: pdf
Categories: Policy Tool, Resource Library
Tags: Alternatives to Incarceration, Conditions of Confinement, Diversion, Harms of Incarceration