Juvenile Detentions Fall During COVID-19, Especially for Minorities
Tuesday, July 7, 2020
AUSTIN, Texas -- Arrests that land young people in the Texas juvenile-justice system have dropped since the coronavirus pandemic began, mirroring a national trend, according to a new analysis by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.
Alycia Castillo is a youth-justice policy analyst for the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition and said the closure of schools because of COVID-19 is likely responsible, because many kids are arrested for classroom violations.
"Folks have been rising up in their cities to contact their school board members to ask for changes that will help prevent this from happening in the future," Castillo said.
Data from the Casey Foundation show that between March 1 and May 1, detention fell 30% for Black youths, 29% for Latino youths and 26% for White youths.
According to Nate Balis, director of the Juvenile Justice Strategy Group with the Casey Foundation, another reason for the drop in juvenile-justice admissions during the two-month period could be that fewer youths were arrested for minor offenses.
"Not only had the detention population fallen by so much, but the racial disparities between Black youths and White youths, between Latino youths and White youths, between Native American youths and White youths had actually narrowed during this time," Balis said.
The juvenile-justice system can be a "school-to-prison" pipeline for some youths, and Castillo said permanent reform could be a huge cost savings for schools and the state.
"I would love to see us shift the culture from such a punitive approach, in general, but of course to our children - and especially for Texas as we enter the next few years of really an economic crisis," Castillo said.
In Texas, Black people represent only 12% of the state's total population, but 40% of the children at detention facilities - as young as 13 years old - are Black.
Disclosure: Annie E Casey Foundation contributes to our fund for reporting on Children's Issues, Criminal Justice, Early Childhood Education, Education, Juvenile Justice, Welfare Reform. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.
get more stories like this via email
Health and Wellness
BALTIMORE -- Spurred on by COVID challenges, a grant from the Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council to two human services providers is …
RUBY MOUNTAINS, Nev. -- Nevada is the driest state in the nation, yet few of its rivers and streams have federal protections. Now a new report …
ROCK SPRINGS, Wyo. -- This weekend, athletes from across the nation gathered in South Pass City to Run the Red, a series of marathons through the Red …
ST. PAUL, Minn. - The challenges facing older Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Minnesotans will be the focal point of a virtual forum tomorrow…
Health and Wellness
ST. JOSEPH, Mo. - Missourians have a little more than a month until open enrollment for health-care coverage at healthcare.gov, and medical experts …
TOLEDO, Ohio -- As the Biden administration engages in talks with the European Union about dropping tariffs on its steel exports, many U.S.-based …
LINCOLN, Neb. - A coalition of Nebraska community organizations and supporters are collecting signatures for a ballot initiative that would raise the …
MADISON, Wis. - Prescription drug costs are climbing faster than wages for the average Wisconsin resident. That's according to a new analysis…