Next Steps in Juvenile Justice Reform

Back • Publication Date: April 3rd, 2008

Authors: Taby Ali

Downloads: Download #1

In 2007, Connecticut passed landmark changes to its juvenile justice law, both “raising the age” of juvenile court jurisdiction to permit most offenses involving 16 and 17 year olds to be adjudicated in juvenile court rather than adult criminal court, and also expanding diversion services and court options for youth engaged in “status” offenses, such as truancy, running away, and out-of-control behavior. These changes marked a pivotal moment in Connecticut’s treatment of its at-risk youth, moving from a punitive model to one that is more age-appropriate and more likely to prevent future delinquent behavior. Despite this important progress, more work remains to assure full implementation of these changes and to address remaining deficiencies in our juvenile justice system. This brief makes several recommendations on how to improve outcomes and the continuum of care and services for youth in the juvenile justice system.