Statement on Abolishing Youth Fines and Fees

May 2021
By Youth Correctional Leaders for Justice

Current and former leaders of youth justice agencies around the country declare that the time has come to end the practice of charging fines and fees to young people and their families for youth justice system involvement. They oppose these punitive and ineffective practices that exacerbate racial and economic inequity and create barriers to opportunity for youth, families, and communities. Each state must protect its youngest and most vulnerable residents and their families from unnecessary burdens and harms and offer them rehabilitation, hope, and the opportunity for growth and success. Abolishing fines and fees is consistent with this duty and is aligned with the core values of the Youth Correctional Leaders for Justice, which urges every jurisdiction across the country to do so.