Issues and Campaigns

Stop Putting Maryland Youth in Adult Jails: We can do better.

Check out our talking points:

SB757/HB1294 Juveniles - Transfer Determinations - Confinement in Juvenile Facilities


The Just Kids: Baltimore’s Youth in the Adult Criminal System

The Just Kids Report

The Just Kids Partnership undertook qualitative and quantitative research, with a specific focus on Baltimore City, to find out more about youth who are charged as adults: who they are, what happens to them in the adult system, and whether our current policies are effective at rehabilitating youth and reducing crime.

We created a report detailing our findings and made several recommendations for reform. In essence, the State of Maryland needs to take significant steps toward effectively reducing crime, improving community safety, saving taxpayer dollars, and improving fairness of the judicial process for children who are charged as adults.

Download the Report



Ending the Automatic Prosecution of Youth As Adults

By law youth as young as 14 charged with certain crimes will be automatically sent to the adult criminal justice system based solely on age and offense.   The bulk of these laws (excepting those in which a youth has been charged with a capital offense) were passed in the 1994, the result of a nationwide movement to “get tough on crime.”  As detailed in the Just Kids Report and other studies, this practice is seriously flawed, casts a wide net that catches youth who can be held accountable in the juvenile system or should never be in the system at all, harms the youth who are involved, and does not deter crime or make communities any safer in the long run.  The only way to change this mandatory charging practice, however,  is to repeal the laws that allow for automatic prosecution.

To learn more about Maryland law and policy concerning youth charged as adults and about the  Just Kids campaign to end this practice, read on.


Pretrial Detention of Youth in Adult Jails

The Just Kids Partnership has been working to change where youth who are charged as adults are detained pretrial.  Under current law every youth who is charged as an adult and subsequently detained is automatically placed in an adult jail while s/he or she awaits trial. They may be held in general population, in isolation or in a separate tier or floor with other youth, depending on the Maryland county.  National and local  studies consistently indicate that the prosecution and detention of juveniles in the adult criminal justice system places youth at increased risk of harm, is an inefficient use of public funds and does little if anything to reduce recidivism or deter criminal activity.


Download more Information:


Share this article

Comments are closed.

Visit Us On FacebookVisit Us On TwitterVisit Us On Youtube