Georgia: Empty parking lot for attached low brick buildings with green roofs.

For Kids Unsafe at Home, School Closure Increases Risk For Trauma

In January, Sharral Dean, a therapist at the Family Counseling Center of Central Georgia, was seeing about 30 young clients a week. At any given time, five to seven of them were what Dean calls “at risk” — more likely to experience violence at home, at higher risk for depression, anxiety, fighting in school and entering the juvenile justice system.

Louisiana: Street view of Bridge City Center for Youth

Frustrated Parents, Advocates Starting to Sue Over Youth Not Freed Over COVID-19

Two months ago, her son, now 20, had spent the weekend on furlough, being a regular kid instead of a youth locked up in one of Louisiana’s juvenile detention centers. While an ankle monitor measured his compliance with orders to stay at home, he’d found joy for three days in simple activities like mowing the yard and eating boiled crawfish. He was able to take a shower and use the restroom without asking permission first. But his time was cut short. Though he had been scheduled to stay a long weekend, through Tuesday, his family was instructed to return him to the Bridge City Center for Youth in Bridge City a day early.

fees and fines: Man with gray hair counts dollars and coins at table

Moratorium on Juvenile Court Fees and Fines Can Ease Family Burdens During COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic explodes into a full-blown public health and economic crisis, states around the country are beginning to recognize that now is not the time to assess and collect fees and fines in the criminal legal system. These emergency reforms are win-win: Families keep the money they need for daily survival, and criminal courts free up their time and attention to concentrate on more pressing issues.