Youth Justice Milwaukee co-founders Sharlen Moore and Jeffery Roman released the following statement after a settlement was reached to overhaul Wisconsin’s treatment of young people in the juvenile justice system:
“Today’s settlement only begins to acknowledge the years of abuse, trauma, and neglect that Wisconsin’s children suffered at Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake. The fact that it was ever considered acceptable to lock children up alone for weeks in tiny cells, restrain them or use chemical agents shows how outdated and abusive youth prisons are.
“This settlement was long overdue – but there’s still a lot of work to do to replace outdated institutions with more effective alternatives. We’re eager to work together with the independent monitor, state officials, and community members to make that a reality.”
Youth Justice Milwaukee is a broad-based campaign advocating for community-based, family-centered, restorative programs as an alternative to locking up children in Wisconsin’s youth prisons. Youth Justice Milwaukee represents a coalition of persons who were incarcerated as youth, families of youth who are or were incarcerated, service providers, and local and national youth justice advocates.