Advocates Help Stop Youth Incarceration

JJI President Elizabeth Clarke is quoted in an article at Truthout about advocates helping to close or prevent the expansion of juvenile prisons around the country. The article details Gov. Quinn’s decision to close several prisons including two youth detention facilities in an effort to save money and as a result of years of work by advocates.

The article quotes Quinn’s most recent budget address, in which he talked about closing juvenile facilities being “good policy. When I took office, Illinois had 1,330 young people in juvenile detention centers. Today we have 857. Our community-based rehabilitation strategies are working. They are reducing our juvenile population and helping more young offenders choose a better path.”

Clarke talks in the story about Illinois’s experience with Redeploy Illinois, an effort to reduce youth incarceration. The program aimed to reduce youth incarceration by 25 percent over a three-year period; over a span of five years, most of the participating counties have reduced youth incarceration by more than 50 percent.

Click here to read the full story.

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