Tallahassee, FL – There’s a new push tonight to help keep kids out of jail, and Florida’s Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) wants your feedback.
DJJ is kicking off the first of eight town hall meetings.
When many people think of Florida’s DJJ, they still think of the death of teenager Martin Lee Anderson at a Bay County boot camp.
The story made national headlines when it broke in 2006.
14 year old Anderson was beaten to death by guards at the bootcamp run by DJJ.
The camp was shutdown and Anderson’s parents won a five million dollar settlement from the state. WCTV did an interview with Anderson’s mother, Gina Jones, back in 2010, talking about what happened to her son.
Gina Jones: “he had no reason to be beaten like that. I don’t know if you all know, he wasn’t even in there three hours. That was his first day. We buried him the day before his 15th birthday.”
DJJ says this series of meetings is not directly related to any specific case, but they do want to improve the system.
DJJ is going to lay out proposals for reform to the public and take in feedback.
Those proposals include at home therapy, and civil citations for some offenses, before children get too deep into the system.