Juvenile Justice Reform in Virginia
Task the Department of Juvenile Justice with preparing a plan for investing in community-based alternatives within Virginia localities, beginning with a survey of what space in local detention centers and other community infrastructure and capacity already exists. Further decrease the number of youths committed to juvenile correctional centers for non-violent theft by reforming the outmoded larceny threshold to a minimum of $500 to reflect inflation and proportionate accountability. Increase victim participation in the juvenile justice process by involving the harmed party in determining proper restitution amount and structure. Consider the expansion and improvement of protocols to identify serious mental illness in youth, and place a priority on addressing those needs through outpatient treatment plans combined with juvenile probation as an alternative to incarceration. Address the high school-to-law-enforcement referral rate by increasing restorative justice program access in schools and creating an exception to the disorderly conduct code section for behavior of youths within the school environment.