Tue., October 4, 2011 6:52am (EDT)

Study Says Jail Ineffective For Kids
By Josephine Bennett
Updated: 3 years ago

ATLANTA  —  
(file photo)
(file photo)
A just-released report says courts in many states, including Georgia, need to lock up fewer kids. Researchers say most of the time it doesn’t work.

The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s report, “No Place for Kids, The Case for Reducing Incarceration,” says detention centers are dangerous, ineffective, and obsolete.

Clayton County Chief Juvenile Court Judge Steve Teske says budget cuts have reduced jail populations, but provided little help to young people who still need intervention.

“While we’re able to reduce the number of kids detained, and cut out facilities, all we’re doing is cutting the money our completely and not being able to divert that to treatment and resources, and community programs.”

Teske says says since 2001, Clayton County has developed a program with the Foundation and local schools to provide alternatives to incarceration, resulting in a two-thirds decrease in court referrals.