Friday, October 7, 2022

Play

Following a settlement with tribes, SD phases In voting-access reforms; older voters: formidable factor in Maine gubernatorial race; walking: a simple way to boost heart health.

Play

Biden makes a major move on marijuana laws; the U.S. and its allies begin exercises amid North Korean threats; and Generation Z says it's paying close attention to the 2022 midterms.

Play

Rural residents are more vulnerable to a winter wave of COVID-19, branding could be key for rural communities attracting newcomers, and the Lummi Nation's totem pole made it from Washington state to D.C.

Bill Would Raise Age that Kids Go to Adult Court

Play

Monday, February 26, 2018   

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Legislation aimed at keeping juveniles on the right track is being discussed by Illinois lawmakers.

Rep. Laura Fine, D-Glenview, introduced HB 4581 this month. It would gradually bump the age that young offenders charged with misdemeanors are sent to adult court from 18 to 21, if the court decides the case does not belong in juvenile court.

Betsy Clarke, president of the Juvenile Justice Initiative, said adult court can only jail and punish, but juvenile judges can give alternatives to young people who have gotten in trouble. For example, they can steer them towards getting a G.E.D or job training, or place them with a mentor.

"You can really look holistically at what the issues are that are causing the young person to come into conflict with the law, and then address those underlying issues,” Clarke said.

She said the goal is to make sure that punishments for young people who make mistakes don't make things worse rather than better. The bill has been assigned to committee for study and will be heard in the next couple of weeks.

Lael Chester, director of the Emerging Adults Justice Project at Columbia University Justice Lab, said much like small children learn to walk or are potty trained at different ages, young people mature at different rates as well. She said they can learn from their mistakes, and when they do, society benefits.

"There's no magic birthday suddenly transforming you from a child to an adult,” Chester said. “Young people are going from being completely dependent to being independent. And they're going from being impulsive, very peer driven, to being very thoughtful and planning for the future."

Clarke said recent discussions about raising the age to purchase weapons or tobacco to 21 is proof that young people don't mature automatically at 18. She said it's in society's interest to get young offenders back on track.

"This age group receives a lot of second and third and fourth chances to make mistakes,” Clarke said. “We must invest in these young people. Otherwise, we will be paying - as taxpayers - for their lifelong incarceration."


get more stories like this via email

In a recent lawsuit, a federal judge found nearly 10 examples in which the State of South Dakota had made it difficult for Native Americans to register to vote. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

This election season, South Dakota is starting to implement voting-access reforms in light of a recent settlement with Native American tribes…


Social Issues

Between rising inflation and the ups and downs of the stock market, it isn't surprising that folks are concerned about their own financial situation…

Social Issues

The U.S. Postal Service is hiring 28,000 seasonal employees ahead of the surge in end-of-year holiday letters and packages for facilities in Michigan …


The average monthly Social Security benefit in August was $1,546. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The roughly 2.4 million Ohioans who rely on Social Security income are expected to get a big boost in benefits, but advocates for the program are …

Social Issues

Democratic Gov. Janet Mills and her challenger, former Republican Gov. Paul LePage, both are courting votes from Maine's largest contingency -- …

Methane released into the atmosphere is responsible for at least 25% of current global warming, according to the Environmental Defense Fund. (permianmap.org)

Environment

Ahead of revised methane regulations expected from the federal government, a new study shows that gas flaring in oil-producing states such as Texas …

Health and Wellness

Even for Virginians who think they're too busy to exercise, experts say there's one surefire way to squeeze in a modest workout: walking. Although …

Social Issues

Groups challenging the criminal consequences for failing to pay rent in Arkansas say they'll take another run at it, perhaps as a class-action …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021