Youth incarceration in Wisconsin fell more than 50 percent between 2005 and 2014; the state now incarcerates on average 307 youth in juvenile correctional facilities. Still, youth prisons cost the state more than $30 million each year, and the return on that investment is poor. More than 60 percent of youth released from incarceration in 2010 were convicted of a new criminal offense within three years. Wisconsin also has the fifth highest black-white commitment rate disparity in the nation; black youth are 15 times more likely to be incarcerated than their white peers. This data snapshot explores youth incarceration in Wisconsin, providing data to state partners working with the YouthFirst! Initiative, a national advocacy campaign supporting state juvenile justice reform efforts.
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