Connecticut Governor Unveils Innovative Ideas about Veterans and Juveniles in the Criminal Justice System
Date:  11-10-2015

Dannel Malloy opens special unit for veterans in prison, and seeks to raise the age of juvenile justice system jurisdiction to 20
Sadly, Connecticut prisons hold almost 700 veterans. Ideally, there would be alternatives to incarceration for those who served our country. Since that is not always possible, Connecticut has opened a special unit just for veterans. On November 9, Governor Dannel P. Malloy and Department of Correction (DOC) Commissioner Scott Semple announced the opening of the new Veterans' Unit of the Cybulski Reintegration Center in Enfield, CT.

The unit was established to give 110 veterans “tailored services” specific to veterans. The special Veterans Unit is part of the Governors Second Chance Society initiative. Read more

On November 6, 2015 the Office of Connecticut Governor Danel Malloy released the prepared comments of the Governor addressing his quest to implement first-in-the-nation reforms regarding the State’s juvenile justice system. The changes to Connecticut’s juvenile justice system is the latest component of his Second Change Society initiative.

Highlights of his comments include Malloy’s plans for

  • Raising the age of eligibility for juvenile justice jurisdiction to 20

  • Treating young adults under the age of 25 “as just that - young adults”

  • Reforming Connecticut’s bail bond system so people who can’t afford bail for non-serious offenses will no longer have to stay in jail until their court date.

    The Governor’s innovative ideas are not without opposition. In an interview with Connecticut television station WFSB, Republican State Representative and Judiciary Committee member, Vincent Candelora stated, “I don't think we should be creating policy in the state of Connecticut that would let you off the hook or treat you differently just because of your age.” That sentiment has been repeated in the comment section of Connecticut new media sources. The majority of people who are opposed to the Governor’s call for change believe that at 18-years old a person knows the different between right and wrong, even though science has proven that brains are not fully developed at that age.

    Malloy is not without support, however. The CT Mirror reports David McGuire, the legislative and policy director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut, as stating Malloy’s new plans “…makes a lot of sense. It will save a lot of lives. It will really impact an entire generation."

    Read Governor Malloy’s prepared comments here.