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Joyner, Jones File Bill to Overturn 2011 Juvenile Detention Law

Sen. Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa, and Rep. Mia L. Jones, D-Jacksonville, have filed companion bills to seeking to reverse a cost-saving 2011 law, Senate Bill 2012, that has resulted in juvenile offenders in select counties being moved into adult facilities.

Joyner and Jones were joined by the Southern Poverty Law Center outside the Senate chambers in the Capitol on Thursday to announce the bills, Senate Bill 506 and House Bill 4012.

They said the law would promote public safety, the law would save taxpayers money, said Joyner, who voted for Senate Bill 2112 in 2011. Dumping low risk children into jails with convicted adults does not improve public safety.

The law was approved 38-0 in the Senate and 83-35 in the House.

The Joyner-Jones bill would require sheriffs to follow rules set up by the Department of Juvenile Justice.

The 2011 law required:

--Counties must fund the entire cost for pre-adjudication detention for juveniles.

--Counties must authorize the county sheriff, any other county jail operator or contract provider that is located inside or outside of the county to operate the facility.

--County sheriffs or other county jail operators must be accredited by the Florida Corrections Accreditation Commission or the American Correctional Association.

--Detention facilities must be inspected annually and meet the Florida Model Jail Standards.

--Counties or county sheriffs may form regional detention facilities through interlocal agreements in order to meet the requirements of this section.

-- County sheriffs or other county jail operators must follow the federal regulations requiring sight and sound separation of juvenile inmates from adult inmates.

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