TN Juvenile Justice Task Force Calls for More Funding to Keep Kids Out of the System

In September, members of the Blue Ribbon Juvenile Justice Task Force heard an assessment of how Tennessee counties use our juvenile justice system and from a national expert on justice-involved youth. Today, subgroups from the task force presented recommendations based on what they've learned.

  1. This month's meeting started with access to counsel concerns, police interrogations of children and funding of services across the state. The initial recommendation is to take a hard look at the law, and how it should be updated to reflect what we now know about adolescent development.
  2. Much of the discussion broke down along urban and rural communities in Tennessee, regarding how community services and training are NOT provided uniformly across the state.

  3. The second subgroup focused on detention and how to keep children brought in for low level offenses out of detention.
  4. "Massachusetts community-based programs working with the highest-risk young adults, have demonstrated recidivism rates that average less than 15 percent."
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