101.5 Highlights the Institute's New Report on Racial Disparities in Youth Prisons

New Jersey 101.5 reports:

In New Jersey, a black kid is 24 times more likely to be committed to a secure juvenile facility than a white child, giving New Jersey the third-highest black-white commitment disparity rate in the entire nation,” said Andrea McChristian, the report’s primary author. “The disproportion comes down to policy choices and a conscious decision of which kids deserve to be locked up, and which should be treated like kids.”...

The group’s policy brief said funneling youth into incarceration is a poor use of state funds. As of 2014, the state spent more than $196,000 annually on one young inmate, it said. It also said the state’s secure facilities — such as the New Jersey Training School for Boys and the Female Secure Care and Intake Facility — are largely underutilized.

“What’s more, research has shown that youth prisons actually increase rather than decrease recidivism rates, so youth incarceration is not having a positive effect on public safety,” McChristian said.

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