JJDPA Analysis

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The Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention and Protection Act (JJDPA) was established in 1974 and was the first federal law that dealt comprehensively with juvenile delinquency to improve the juvenile justice system and support state and local efforts at delinquency prevention. This paper will assess the JJDPA and summarize its purpose and implementation and enforcement. Next, there will be a discussion of the historical context of the policy; followed by a focus of the latent consequences. Finally there will be a vignette as to how this Act has affected a person or family as well as personal reflection toward the policy. The Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention and Protection Act was established in 1974 and has since been reauthorized…show more content…
The federal government’s “War on Crime” by the Johnson administration in the 60s made way for tougher law enforcement and surveillance (Hinton, 2015). However, with this came the separation of children and adults in the criminal justice system; then the separation of juvenile delinquents from status offenders. As mentioned, status offenders are different from juvenile delinquents because they had broken rules which apply to only children. Meanwhile, juvenile delinquents are youths under the age of 18, who committed offenses that would be punishable to adults as well. By the late 1960s, there became a growing concern that juveniles involved in the court-based status-offense system, were not getting their best interests met (Shubik & Kendall, 2007). This can be seen in the growing number of court-involved status offenders who were being detained and placed outside of their homes for noncriminal behavior (Shubik & Kendall, 2007). Following multiple studies and research, the President’s Commission on Law Enforcement and Administration of Justice recommended that the juvenile court be the agency of last resort and that community-based organizations, not penal institutions, should be responsible for these youths (Shubik & Kendall, 2007; Farrington,…show more content…
Furthermore, this leaves room for states to implement their own practices and ways to address status offenders. It has also been argued that the Act “fractured the juvenile justice system so that officials in the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare handled white, middle-income youth” (Hinton, 2015, p. 816). Programs which labeled white youths as “children in trouble” marked minority youths as “chronic offenders” who were deemed a danger to society, and tried as an adult. The exceptions and revisions that have been made to the Act make it possible for repeat status offenders to be detained in secure

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