Juvenile Justice in Kansas: Workgroup Unveils Solutions

Juvenile Justice in Kansas: Workgroup Unveils Solutions

In December 2015, the Kansas Juvenile Justice Workgroup issued a comprehensive set of policy recommendations to improve the state’s juvenile justice system. The following month, the Kansas Legislature introduced a bill that would advance the workgroup’s proposals. Senate Bill 367, which lawmakers will consider during the 2016 legislative session, would:

  • Use targeted services and appropriate sanctions to prevent lower-level offenders from becoming deeply involved with the juvenile justice system.
  • Protect public safety and contain costs by prioritizing resources for higher-level offenders.
  • Sustain effective practices through continued oversight and investment in a strong continuum of evidence-based services.

Kansas leaders established the bipartisan, interbranch workgroup in June 2015 to analyze the state’s juvenile justice system and recommend ways to improve outcomes for young offenders, protect public safety, and reduce costs for taxpayers. The Pew Charitable Trusts provided the working group with technical assistance in evaluating data and developing policy prescriptions. 

The Kansas Legislature is expected to act on S.B. 367 during the 2016 legislative session.

Read more about public safety in Kansas.