Reps. Wolf and Fattah, Chairman and Ranking Member, respectively, of the House CJS Appropriations Subcommittee and creators of the Chuck Colson Criminal Justice Task Force, are introducing the House companion legislation.
To learn more, read the full article HERE.
H.R. 4123, the Prohibiting Detention of Youth Status Offenders Act of 2014 would eliminate locked confinement of status offenders. Under the Juvenile Justice Delinquency and Prevention Act (JJDPA), youth who have committed a status offense such as running away from home or skipping school, cannot be placed in locked confinement unless their behavior violates a valid court order. Rep. Cardenas’ bill, gets rid of this exception. The bill requires all states, within one year of the legislation’s passage, to stop using the valid court order (VCO) exception. States can be granted an additional 12 months to eliminate their use of VCOs if they are able to show hardship. Status offenders do not belong behind bars as overwhelming evidence indicates that once in the prison system the likelihood of repeat incarcerations increases. Efforts need to be addressed to alternative treatment strategies that do not involve incarceration.
H.R. 4124, the Protecting Youth From Solitary Confinement Act prohibits solitary confinement of individuals who are being held in juvenile facilities, and are under federal custody. The bill further requires that the Director of the Board of Prisons compile and present annual data on the number of juveniles who are placed in solitary confinement at their facilities. The report will include demographic information, and data on why and how long the youth was placed in solitary. H.R. 4124, was sent to the Judiciary Committee for their review.
The budget was released this week. The link above provides the most clear way to see where there were cuts and additions happened. Please pay close attention to HHS funds. There was a cut to that budget for 2015. Most of the cuts will be to discretionary funds.(Courtesy of the National Federation)