Kentucky’s Complicated Struggle To Lock Up Fewer Kids On Minor Offenses
Politicians, school administrators and advocates in Kentucky all agree that children shouldn’t be locked up for behavior problems. But there’s little agreement on whether or how to stop the practice.
Kentucky put more kids in detention in 2014 for non-criminal charges than any state except Washington, according to the most recent statistics from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. At least half the states in the U.S. prohibit locking up children for noncriminal offenses. Even when states allow the practice, they use it rarely, except in a handful of states – Kentucky among them.