Five states and three U.S. territories were out of compliance last year with at least one of the four core requirements of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act of 1974, reports Youth Today, citing a report from the U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Federal funds can be withheld from any jurisdiction violating rules barring incarceration of status offenders (those who committed violations that would not be crimes if committed by adults); locking up juveniles with adults or allowing them within sight or sound of adult inmates, or not addressing differences in the way that minority youth are treated by the juvenile justice system.
The places not incompliance included Arkansas, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Washington, Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and American Samoa. (Wyoming voluntarily chooses not to take federal juvenile-delinquency funds). Race is a major issue within the framework of juvenile justice, but the requirement on that issue is toothless, Youth Today says. States have gotten away with “studying” the issue instead of acting on it for decades now, so being compliant is no big feather in the cap.