According to a report by the Anne E. Casey Foundation, youth incarceration rates have dropped by 41% since its peak in 1995.
In 2010 there were 70,792 young people incarcerated, compared to a whopping 107,637 in 1995.
There are a variety of factors that have contributed to this trend. Juvenile crime rates have fallen, long-term sentences for young people aren’t as prevalent, and the economic downturn has forced states and counties to pursue alternatives to incarceration.
Of course for young people of color, the odds are still stacked against them. Black youth are five times as likely as their white peers to be incarcerated; Latino and Native American youth are 2-3 times as likely.