Advocates view the selection of a new chief state’s attorney as a chance to further Connecticut’s criminal justice reforms and reduce the system’s racial disparities.
The Connecticut Juvenile Training School — the product of bid-rigging, outdated thinking and poor execution by the administration of Gov. John G. Rowland — closed Thursday as the last three young occupants left the sprawling detention center for home or private residential facilities.
With Connecticut’s controversial jail for young offenders slated to close within two-and-a-half years, state leaders have begun to contemplate what an alternative juvenile justice system should encompass.
Under fire over questions about how youths are treated while incarcerated — and facing calls from advocates to close the state’s juvenile jails in Middletown — Department of Children and Families Commissioner Wednesday reaffirmed her commitment to keeping the locked facilities she runs open.
Last year 227 boys who committed crimes were incarcerated in the Connecticut Juvenile Training School, the state’s maximum-security facility in Middletown for juvenile offenders. They lived there for months before it was determined when they would be released. This uncertainty came to an end in October.
Child advocates are calling on Connecticut lawmakers to set up a special panel to investigate the treatment of children committed to the care of the Department of Children and Families for breaking the law.