Youth Justice Policy Environments and Their Effects on Youth Confinement Rates, United States, 1996-2016

Version
v0
Resource Type
Dataset : aggregate data
Creator
  • Evans, Douglas
  • Butts, Jeffrey A.
  • Moreno, Gina
  • Wolff, Kevin
Other Title
  • Archival Version (Subtitle)
Publication Date
2020-12-17
Publication Place
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Publisher
  • Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research
Funding Reference
  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
Language
English
Free Keywords
Schema: ICPSR
criminal justice policy; juvenile detention; juvenile justice; policy analysis; reform
Description
  • Abstract

    This study was conducted to address the dropping rates in residential placements of adjudicated youth after the 1990s. Policymakers, advocates, and reseraches began to attirbute the decline to reform measures and proposed that this was the cause of the drop seen in historic national crime. In response, researchers set out to use state-level data on economic factors, crime rates, political ideology scores, and youth justice policies and practices to test the association between the youth justice policy environment and recent reductions in out-of-home placements for adjudicated youth. This data collection contains two files, a multivariate and bivariate analyses. In the multivariate file the aim was to assess the impact of the progressive policy characteristics on the dependent variable which is known as youth confinement. In the bivariate analyses file Wave 1-Wave 10 the aim was to assess the states as they are divided into 2 groups across all 16 dichotomized variables that comprised the progressive policy scale: those with more progressive youth justice environments and those with less progressive or punitive environments. Some examples of these dichotomized variables include purpose clause, courtroom shackling, and competency standard.
  • Abstract

    Residential placements of adjudicated youth grew exponentially in the 1980s and 1990s. By 1997, juvenile courts nationwide confined more than 100,000 youth in training schools and other facilities. This period of sharp growth was followed by a nearly 60 percent decline in placements during the next two decades. Decreasing youth confinement was due at least in part to the historic national crime drop that appeared in the mid-1990s. As the crime rate fell and lowered the demand for youth confinement, policymakers saw an opportunity to experiment with youth justice reforms designed to minimize out-of-home placements in the future. These reforms included broader use of diversion, stronger support for non-residential and community-based services, and the adoption of various evidence-based practices for adjudicated youth. When youth placements continued to drop, policymakers, advocates, and even some researchers began to attribute the decline to reform measures. Researchers at the John Jay College Research and Evaluation Center (JohnJayREC) examined these claims. Statistical models tested the association between state-level reforms and reductions in youth confinement using data on youth placement rates and a multivariate scale scoring every state's approach to youth justice on a continuum from punitive to rehabilitative. Growth curve analyses included other state-level covariates, such as total juvenile arrests, per capita income, unemployment rates, and political ideology. The study found little evidence of a relationship between a state's approach to youth justice and recent trends in juvenile placement. Although rehabilitative states used confinement less than punitive states--in every time period--all states experienced falling rates of confinement after the 1990s. A state's youth justice policies did not appear to be related to its rate of decline in youth confinement.
  • Methods

    In the bivariate analyses file Wave 1-Wave 10 the aim was to assess the states as they are divided into 2 groups across all 16 dichotomized variables that comprised the progressive policy scale: those with more progressive youth justice environments and those with less progressive or punitive environments. Some examples of these dichotomized variables include purpose clause, courtroom shackling, and competency standard. On the other hand, the multivariate analyses file has variables that show the impact of the progressive policy characteristics on the dependent variable which is known as youth confinement. Examples of these variables include: state FIPS code, incarceration rate, and JJGPS scale.
  • Methods

    ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection: Performed consistency checks.; Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes..
  • Abstract

    Datasets:

    • DS0: Study-Level Files
    • DS1: Bivariate Analyses
    • DS2: Multivariate Analyses
Temporal Coverage
  • Time period: 1996--2016
  • 1996 / 2016
  • Collection date: 2017
Geographic Coverage
  • United States
Sampled Universe
Juvenile justice policy environments in the United States. Smallest Geographic Unit: State
Note
Funding institution(s): United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (2017-JF-FX-0064).
Availability
Download
This version of the study is no longer available on the web. If you need to acquire this version of the data, you have to contact ICPSR User Support (ICPSR-help@umich.edu).
Alternative Identifiers
  • 37618 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
Relations
  • Is previous version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR37618.v1

Update Metadata: 2020-12-17 | Issue Number: 1 | Registration Date: 2020-12-17