REFORMING GEORGIA'S JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM
The Problem: According to a 1998
U.S. Department of Justice report and Georgia Department
of Juvenile Justice records, 75% of the children locked
up in juvenile jails across the state are being held for
non-violent offenses. Although African Americans constitute
less than 25% of the state's population, 65% of the kids
locked up are African American males. The schools in Georgia's
youth jails aren't accredited, so the young, school-age
inmates continue to fall behind academically. Worst yet,
while confined, these children are subjected to physical
abuse, rape and other mistreatment that the federal government
has called egregious and unconstitutional.
This has got to stop!
you know... ?
On any given day, over 2,500 children are locked up in
75% (over 1,900) are African Americans.
Most are jailed for non-violent crimes like shoplifting,
breaking windows, running away from home and truancy.
The availability of bail for juveniles is the law in the
state of Georgia, but parents of detained children are
not made aware of this. This leads to unnecessary incarceration
and overcrowding of juvenile facilities.
Overcrowded jails can't be managed properly and are dangerous
to the kids and guards.
The mixing of non-violent offenders with violent offenders
leads to physical abuse and rape. For example, in 1999
4,600 reports of "inmate on inmate" assaults.
540 reports of "staff on inmate" assaults.
180 reports of attempted suicides.
175 reports of sexual assaults.
we believe these numbers are under-reported!