In ten years, the United States has cut youth incarceration in half. While the reduction is impressive, youth involvement in the juvenile justice system continues to impact youth of color disproportionately.
In every state, Black youth are more likely to be incarcerated than their white peers, about five times as likely nationwide. American Indian youth are three times as likely to be incarcerated as their white peers. For Latinx youth disparities are smaller but still prevalent; Latinx youth are 42 percent more likely than their white peers to be incarcerated. These disparities are not only caused by differences in offending but also by harsher enforcement and punishment of youth of color.
This report shows incarceration disparities state-by-state and how those disparities have changed over the last 10 years. It offers recommendations to confront racism in the juvenile justice system.