Exactly 150 years after the New Jersey Training School for Boys opened its doors, a rally outside the prison will call for its closure, suggesting youth incarceration in New Jersey has not succeeded at rehabilitating the young minds that go through the system.
The June 28 rally, led by the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice, will push for the shutdown of both the Jamesburg facility and the Female Secure Care and Intake Facility in Bordentown. Caravans of supporters — all part of the Youth Justice New Jersey coalition — are expected to attend.
“The current system has not done what it was created to do, and that is to rehabilitate our young people,” Retha Onitiri, the institute’s juvenile justice campaign director, told New Jersey 101.5. “We have a revolving door of recidivism.”
Onitiri said studies have shown youth incarceration, as it exists today in the Garden State, increases one’s odds of living in poverty or being in prison as an adult.