A Very Special Place in Life: The History of Juvenile Justice in Missouri
Douglas Abrams, A VERY SPECIAL PLACE IN LIFE: THE HISTORY OF JUVENILE JUSTICE IN MISSOURI, Missouri Juvenile Justice Association, 2003
12 Pages Posted: 27 Jul 2006 Last revised: 23 Aug 2012
The leaders were dedicated reformers - the "child savers" - who sought to remove children from poorhouses, prisons and other harsh institutions that left little hope for productive adulthood.
A Very Special Place in Life traces the twentieth century growth of Missouri's juvenile courts. It discusses the profound changes wrought by the United States Supreme Court's Gault decision, which triggered the "due process revolution" in the nation's juvenile courts in 1967. The book examines efforts to reduce disparities between services available to rural and metropolitan children, and between treatment of minority children and others.
By the early 1980s, Missouri began winning national recognition in juvenile justice. When the state replaced its deteriorating reformatories with small regional facilities stressing treatment and therapy, the new approach to delinquency won national acclaim as "a guiding light for reform."
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation