Benefits Of Treatment For Juvenile Offenders

1934 Words8 Pages
The Benefits of Treatment for Juvenile Offenders
Tompkins, Patrice
Texas State University

The Benefits of Treatment for Juvenile Offenders
The juvenile justice system is broken in the United States but Louisiana, among many other states, is focusing their efforts into treatment over the incarceration of juvenile offenders According to the New York Times (2015), Louisiana has become a juvenile justice reform leader. State and local leaders have been working hard to make dramatic improvements to the juvenile justice system and prevent children from coming into contact with it. Community based programs and services have received more attention and funding in an attempt to rehabilitate juveniles by targeting the root of the
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In the early 1990’s, a large increase in delinquency led to a general increase in the stringency and punitive treatment of juveniles by the criminal justice system. However new evidence suggests there are ways of dealing with young offenders that are more effective and less costly than prosecuting them as adults and imposing harsh sentences (Juvenile Justice, 2009). Community based programs can help keep youth out of the juvenile justice system. Informal probation and consent decrees provide stipulations that the juvenile must abide by in order for their case to be closed so that no further action is taken. This sort of alternative gives juveniles the opportunity to be held accountable while keeping a clear record. Societal view on youth incarceration has changed since the 1990’s ‘get tough on crime’ approach. "Our country is plagued by the shameful disproportionate treatment of minority youth at all stages in the justice process, and stands alone in the world in our punitive approach to children," observed the National Juvenile Justice Network in December 2008. A blue-ribbon task force in Louisiana reached much the same conclusion in 2005: "Rather than receiving proper rehabilitative care, young people are incarcerated in violent, unsafe facilities that compound preexisting problems, such as child abuse, mental illness, learning disabilities, and school failure (Cose,
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