In the wake of allegations of abuse by staffers at a girls’ lockup in Milton, the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice is tightening its oversight of private residential facilities – adding interviews with youths and a partnership with the non-profit Annie E. Casey Foundation to its monitoring procedures.
florida department of juvenile justice
The Florida juvenile prison for girls got a 100 percent satisfactory rating from the state a year ago, though two staffers have been accused of abusing girls there, and one was caught on video.
Before becoming secretary of the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice, Wansley Walters directed the Miami-Dade County Juvenile Services Department, considered a national model for saving money while reducing the juvenile arrest rate. She’s the first woman to lead DJJ.
The budget Gov. Rick Scott signed into law last week reduces juvenile justice’s budget 11 percent, and eliminates 700 jobs in addition to 500 vacant positions that will be abolished. The Legislature singled out youth prisons for closure.