Report Says That 40% Of Girls In Juvenile Detention Are LGBTQ. But Why?

There are few topics more depressing than that of crimes committed by young people. But a shocking study regarding the make up of the children in the American juvenile delinquency system has come back in the public consciousness.

report for the National Council on Crime and Delinquency says that 40% of girls in the juvenile delinquency system fall under the LGBTQ umbrella. Shocking.

The report was authored by Dr. Aisha Canfield and Dr. Angela Irving.

“New NCCD research findings from a sample of 1,400 girls in juvenile jurisdictions around the country show that 40% of girls in the juvenile justice system are lesbian, bisexual, transgender, questioning, or gender-nonconforming (LBTQ/GNC), and 86% of girls in the system are of color.[i]” Irving explained in a blog post.

She further went on to elaborate that these girls would end up there due to committing what she called “survival crimes” such as prostitution.

OZY commented that falling under the LGBTQ umbrella set these girls up for further discrimination and harsh treatment, which leads to them being placed in juvenile hall.

From OZY:

“‘LGBT of both sexes are also three times more likely to receive disproportionately harsh consequences at school, while also being the target of harassment. Perhaps surprisingly, LGBT girls are more likely to get in trouble for fighting; for boys, it’s disruptive behaviors in the classroom.”

This information means that people who work in juvenile halls should probably have to adapt their training and practices to learn how to address issues that girls who fall under the LGBTQ umbrella could face.

“I think statistics like that really identify the importance for us to think intersectionally…A lot of times when we think about the criminal justice systems it’s often directed at young black men… this is not only about young black men, it’s about young black trans women, it’s about young cis women, it’s about the LGBTQ population also,” Jonathan Lykes, policy analyst of the Center for the Study of Social Policy told the Huffington Post. “So really understanding how all of these different populations are impacted by these oppressive systems.”

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Cover Photo Credit: Michael Coghlan/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)

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