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The Case for Reauthorization of The Juvenile Justice And Delinquency Prevention Act
By Tara Andrews
First enacted in 1974, the federal Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) embodies the federal government’s best efforts to improve juvenile justice systems at the state and local levels. The JJDPA authorizes federal funding to states to help them adopt effective delinquency prevention and intervention programs in exchange for states’ compliance with four core requirements designed to protect system-involved youth:
Deinstitutionalization of Status Offenders (DSO): prohibits the locked confinement of youth charged with status offenses, e.g., truancy and running away, as well as abused and neglected youth involved with the dependency courts, with exceptions;
Adult Jail Removal (Jail Removal): prohibits the placement of youth charged as juveniles in adult jails and lock-ups, with exceptions;
Sight and Sound Separation (Separation): prohibits sustained sight and sound contact with adult inmates if youth are detained in a locked facility, e.g., cannot be housed next to adult c
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