Judge Corriero testifies about Punitive Segregation of Youth in New York State Correctional Facilities

Posted: July 21st, 2014 | by Yuval Sheer

On July 10, 2014, Michael A. Corriero, the Center’s Executive Director, testified before the New York Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights about the use of punitive segregation for youth in New York . Judge Corriero noted that in New York State, the use of punitive segregation is prohibited in facilities designated for youth involved with the Family Court. Nonetheless, because New York is one of only two states in the entire nation to set the age of criminal responsibility at 16, the state holds 16- and 17-year olds in adult facilities that use punitive segregation techniques. Judge Corriero stated:

The unfortunate reality is that the same qualities of youth which require a developmentally sensitive response, also make them more susceptible to receive punitive segregation in the context of an adult jail—they are impulsive, shortsighted, and extremely vulnerable to peer pressure. When you consider that in New York, 16 and 17-year olds account for less than 1% of the population in prison, and less than 7% of the population in jails, you can see how in a system driven to respond to adults, it will be difficult to effectively plan appropriate responses tailored for youth as an alternative to punitive segregation….

Therefore, I call on this commission to support efforts to raise the age of criminal responsibility in New York, and, until effective legislation is passed, demand that our state remove all adolescents from adult facilities.

You may read Judge Corriero’s full statement by clicking here.


« Back to News


Designed by Jason Safir