Juvenile Offenders: Race, Class, and Gender
It is virtually impossible to discuss juvenile corrections without examining the issues of race, class, and gender. Where young people are placed by the courts, as well as the programs and facilities made available to them, is directly or indirectly associated with whether a juvenile is a member of a minority group, male or female, and/or working or middle class. Most public and scholarly attention has been devoted to the role of race and ethnicity in juvenile corrections, particularly to the overrepresentation and disparate treatment of minority youths (e.g., African American, Hispanic, Native American, and Asian American). Overrepresentation refers to situations in which a larger proportion of minority youths are involved in juvenile corrections than would be expected based on their numbers in the general population. Disparity describes a pattern of outcomes in which some racial groups are treated differently from others. Neither concept automatically implies discrimination since both can ...