Legislative Action Alert

WI Senate Must Improve Youth Prisons Bill (AB 953/SB 807)

Issue: Last week, the Wisconsin Assembly unanimously passed a bill to close the notoriously horrific Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake prisons without investing in community alternatives. The bill invests over 65 million dollars in facilities and/or facility programs. While YJM supports the closure, the bill fails to do what we have been asking lawmakers to do for years—listen to our communities and invest in community based alternatives to incarceration.#CloseLincolnHills #nokidsinprison

Call Your Senator Today to Let Them Know:

  • It’s time to look beyond bars to reform Wisconsin’s juvenile justice system. I support the immediate closure of the abusive Lincoln Hills/Copper Lake, but amendments are needed to the house bill.
  • AB 953 gives the counties and Department of Corrections approximately 65 million dollars for construction of new secure facilities across the state. While the county level facilities may have programs for youth, we know prisons and out-of-home placements are the most expensive and least effective ways to respond to offenses committed by children. That money should be invested directly into counties for programs outside of secure walls.
  • Wisconsin’s Department of Corrections should have no authority over anything related to our youth. AB 953 gives DOC power to approve county level construction and regulate programming in facilities.
  • AB 953 allows DOC to use Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake for an adult prison. Lincoln Hills should be demolished and never used for incarceration again. The money saved from closure should be reinvested into our communities.

Contact the Senate Members of the Judiciary and Public Safety Committee to amend AB 953 today:

Senator Wanggard (R-Racine County)(Chair): (608) 266-1832/Sen.Wanggaard@legis.wisconsin.gov

Senator Testin (R-Stevens-Point County) (Vice-Chair): (608) 266-3123/Sen.Testin@legis.wi.gov

Senator Stroebel (R-Saukville): (608) 266-7513/Sen.Stroebel@legis.wisconsin.gov

Senator Risser (D-Madisdon): (608) 266-1627/Sen.Risser@legis.wisconsin.gov

Senator Taylor, Bill Sponsor on Senate Side (D-Milwaukee): (608) 266-5810/Sen.Taylor@legis.wisconsin.gov

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