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President Trump Releases Fiscal Year 2020 Budget Proposal

Campaign for Youth Justice
Aprill Turner
Phone: (202) 821-1604 

Coalition for Juvenile Justice
Naomi Smoot
Phone: (202) 467-0864 ext.113

President Trump Releases Fiscal Year 2020 Budget Proposal Budget proposal undermines reauthorization bill signed by President Trump in 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 13, 2019) –The Act 4 JJ Coalition is deeply disappointed in President Trump’s FY 2020 budget proposal. His plan includes $238.5 million for juvenile justice programs, down from the $287 million appropriated in FY 2019. This 17% decrease comes as a surprise after President Trump signed the Juvenile Justice Reform Act of 2018, which reauthorizes the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA).

According to documents provided by the Department of Justice at the annual budget rollout on March 12, 2019, the administration has requested $58 million for Title II of the JJDPA and $17 million for Title V. This is more than $100 million below what Congress authorized in December’s bill passage, which set these levels at $176 million per year for the next five years. The President’s budget proposal, dubbed “A Budget for a Better America,” notes that lower-level priority programs at the Department of Justice have been reduced or eliminated.

“Our country cannot afford to continue to view our children and youth as low-level priorities,” said Naomi Smoot, Executive Director of the Coalition for Juvenile Justice and co-chair of the Act 4 JJ Coalition. “The reauthorization signed by the President in December of last year made critical improvements to the JJDPA to ensure states can protect children and youth in the juvenile and criminal justice systems, while improving community safety. Successful implementation requires full funding as authorized by Congress.”

The JJDPA creates a critical Federal/state partnership that has worked to reduce our over-reliance on youth incarceration and resulted in lowest youth crime rates in four decades. When President Trump signed the Juvenile Justice Reform Act of 2018, it marked the first time in 16 years that this keystone federal program was reauthorized. “This proposed cut is an affront to our children and families,” said Marcy Mistrett, CEO of the Campaign for Youth Justice and co-chair for the Act 4 JJ Coalition, “and it undermines the promise made by Attorney General Barr during his confirmation process that he would ensure the effective implementation of the Juvenile Justice Reform Act of 2018.”

The cuts proposed to juvenile justice programs are part of a larger, concerning trend in the proposed budget to cut programs that support some of our nation’s most vulnerable children. The administration is seeking one of the largest-ever cuts to domestic discretionary spending and drastic cuts to mandatory spending programs, including the Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), and Medicaid.

For more information go to www.ACT4JJ.org


About Act 4 Juvenile Justice - Act 4 Juvenile Justice (ACT 4 JJ) is a campaign of the National Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Coalition (NJJDPC), which represents a broad network of organizations that work on youth development and juvenile justice issues. ACT 4 JJ is composed of juvenile justice, child welfare, and youth development organizations advocating for the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) and increased federal funding for juvenile justice programs and services.

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