- Associated Press - Monday, July 13, 2015

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) - More than 20 years after the parents of a 13-year-old girl runaway pushed Olympia lawmakers to pass the Becca Bill, critics still argue that the bill does more harm than good.

The News Tribune reports (https://bit.ly/1fCJSku ) the Becca Bill lets Washington judges place kids in juvenile detention for skipping school, breaking curfew or running away from home, actions known as status offenses.

According to the most recent data available, Washington judges ordered status offenders to spend time in juvenile detention more than 2,700 times in 2011, which was more than twice as often as any other state.

Researchers and legal experts say detaining children for noncriminal activity doesn’t always lead to improved behavior and could worsen their problems.

But supports of the law say it could save a life.


Information from: The News Tribune, https://www.thenewstribune.com

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