Published: December 18th, 2013
“The Comeback States report charted the reduction of youth incarceration nationwide and in the nine states for the 2001-to-2010 period. Significantly, these states not only reduced youth incarceration over this time, but also achieved reductions in youth crime, as measured by substantial declines in youth arrests. For that report, data for the year 2010 on nationwide and state confinement of youth were the latest data available. Since the time of the release of that report, 2011 data on youth confinement have become available from the U.S. Justice Department’s (USDOJ) Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). The new data enabled us to examine the extent to which the trend toward youth confinement reduction nationwide and in the nine comeback states continued beyond 2010.
In this update report, we also expanded the scope of the research to include a group of states that have not experienced sharp reductions in their reliance on youth incarceration, but have adopted significant incarceration-reducing policies in recent years. While states nationwide averaged an impressive 4.1% per year reduction in youth incarceration for the ten years between 2001 and 2011, not every state kept pace. Some of those states that lagged behind the nation in reducing youth incarceration, however, set the stage for future reductions by adopting a mix of incarceration-reducing policies. These “coming-from-behind” states highlighted in this update report include: Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Wyoming.”
-from the introduction