Report | Event | June 20, 2024

Costly, punitive juvenile justice approaches undermine healthy adolescent development

Diversion and restorative justice interventions can reduce recidivism and improve public safety

Each year, over 700,000 young people are arrested and detained via the juvenile justice system. While the prevention of juvenile delinquency is an essential part of crime prevention, research shows that incarceration damages young people’s physical and mental health, impedes their educational and career success, exposes them to trauma, and increases rates of recidivism. As a result, public safety is undermined.

Early intervention to provide youth with positive activities and role models can reduce negative influences that can lead to criminal behavior. We need to focus on prevention and intervention initiatives targeting youth in our community.

Walter McNeil, Sheriff, Leon County, FL Sheriff’s Office

To maximize adolescents’ potential and reduce their likelihood of further involvement in crime, juvenile justice policy and practices must account for youth’s developmental needs. Supporting and adopting developmentally appropriate interventions that provide meaningful opportunities for youth to acquire the skills necessary to become productive adults is a must.

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  1. Juvenile Justice