Note to Congress: Rethink Juvenile Justice Cuts

Note to Congress: Rethink Juvenile Justice Cuts by Marie Williams

To read this article on the Crime Report website, click here.

The FY 2014 Omnibus spending bill , released by Congress mid- January, included proposed budget cuts for many key initiatives that dramatically reduce delinquency and promote proven, community-based alternatives that keep youth out of detention.

Most notably, Congress’ proposal would eliminate the Juvenile Accountability Block Grant (JABG) program, which enables states to develop and implement essential system improvements. That would include the hiring of key staff, the development of alternatives to detention, and the training of juvenile justice professionals in evidence-supported and accountability-based practices.

The loss of JABG funding will directly affect the ability of states and communities to deliver the services that will help youth avoid involvement with the justice system. That’s the clear message we have been hearing from members of the Coalition for Juvenile Justice (CJJ).

That message should be heard in Congress as well.