Camden, NJ
Informing and Connecting Engaged Citizens
October 27, 2014
LGBTQ Youths in the Juvenile Justice System
"Studies have suggested that LGBTQ youths are disproportionately represented in the juvenile justice system. For example, Himmelstein and Brückner (2011) found that youths who self- identified as LGBTQ were significantly more likely to be stopped by police than youths who identified as heterosexual. The 2010 study by Irvine found that LGB and gender-nonconforming youths were twice as likely to have been previously held in secure detention for truancy, warrants, probation violations, running away, and prostitution compared with their heterosexual and gender-normative peers. However, there were no differences when comparing the prevalence of detention for serious charges such as violent offenses, weapon charges, property offenses, and alcohol or drug offenses. Rather, the results seemed to suggest that LGBTQ and nonconforming youths were detained for nonviolent offenses that could be linked to occurrences of out-of-home placements and homelessness (Irvine 2010), according to the Office of Juvenile Justice and Deliquency Prevention.
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