National Youth Justice Awareness Month

Posted on
The Coalition and its partners seek to educate policymakers and the public on the need to improve juvenile justice system outcomes and safely reduce youth confinement by:
  • Focusing juvenile system dollars on evidence-based practices, relying on high-quality research and statutory incentives.
  • Improving responses and access to treatment for justice system-involved youth with mental health needs.

Juvenile Justice Awareness Month Facts

  • 1,024,000 juveniles were arrested in 2014; the majority of these arrests were for non-violent crimes.
  • In 2014, there were 5,235 juveniles incarcerated in adult prisons and jails.
  • In 2013, African Americans were 16% of the youth population, but 38% of youth committed to juvenile justice facilities.
  • According to data from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), youth of color are more likely to be incarcerated than their Caucasian counterparts. In 2013, Black youth were 4.6 times as likely; Native American youth were 3.3 times as likely; and Latino youth were 1.7 times as likely to be incarcerated than White youth.
  • African-American juveniles were 4 times as likely to be incarcerated than white juveniles. Hispanic juveniles were 61% more likely.
  • In 2012, 79% of juvenile offenders sentenced to life in prison without parole witnessed violence in their homes regularly; 32% grew up in public housing; and 40% had been enrolled in special education classes.
  • In Illinois, 86% of juvenile offenders were re-arrested within three years of release. In Virginia, 49.1% of juveniles offenders were re-arrested within one year of release.
  • Did you know? Delinquency adjudications can dramatically increase sentencing calculations under federal guidelines.
  • Texas has cut juvenile confinement by 80% since 2006 eliminating state confinement of misdemeanants, while continuing to cut juvenile crime, reducing by 50% the number of juvenile arrests.