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Push to Stop Youth Jail Intensifies

About 300 people gathered inside the War Memorial Building on Thursday, November 8, to lead a rallying cry against the state’s plans to build a youth jail in Baltimore City.

About 300 people gathered inside the War Memorial Building on Thursday, November 8, to lead a rallying cry against the state’s plans to build a youth jail in Baltimore City.

The collection of parents, educators, students, activists and local leaders was joined by iconic civil rights leader Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr., who traveled to Baltimore to protest against building a $100 million youth detention center that research shows is not needed. Baltimore and its citizens would be better served by the state investing the money in programs that have proven to prevent juvenile delinquency, Rev. Jackson said.

The rally was organized by Baltimore's Safe & Sound Campaign, which has been at the forefront of the push to prevent the consutrction of a new youth jail.

Gov. Martin O’Malley has indicated that he plans to move forward with building the youth jail in spite of research that identifies alternative methods that are more effective and less costly. Following months of meetings and conversations with Gov. O’Malley, youth advocates have called for the reallocation of nearly $100 million in funding for the jail toward a broader, more comprehensive plan that promotes youth success by investing in alternatives to detention like apprenticeships, jobs and recreational opportunities.

If you support investing in additional youth programming please contact Gov. O’Malley and your state representatives and demand that they reallocate the funding for a youth jail toward programs with a proven track record of enriching the lives of Baltimore

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Baltimore Matt November 16, 2012 at 01:24 PM
Again...let’s not have a new youth jail, we'll just put those little animals back on the street to influence our children, sell their drugs, ruining our property values (because no one wants to live next to disrespectful delinquents), destroy our communities, not go to the schools that we provide, stealing our stuff, committing violent crimes, and being a general burden on our city because they know they will get away with it. Sure some can be reached but that is if you start by taking them away from their dysfunctional families (how can a child know how to act if their parents act the same way or some cases the parents actively encourage the behavior). I'm very liberal but if you ask me we have no choice but to build a huge youth jail (if not, the youths will either be turn right back in the street as they are now or be in terrible overcrowding in existing facilities, which is illegal and will lead to their release).
Sean Tully November 17, 2012 at 01:32 PM
"...investing in alternatives to detention like apprenticeships, jobs and recreational opportunities." I am not opposed to training kids for jobs. In fact I would encourage more training for blue collar jobs then this insane push to get every kid a college degree. Not every kid is college degree material. Train the kids to be plumbers, electricians and other jobs that can't be shipped to China. But, having said that, not every kid is going to go straight just because there are job training opportunities or rec leagues to join. The fact is that some people are just bad, for whatever reason. I say build the jail. It's better then throwing these kids in with the adults in city jail.

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