Time: The Worst “School-to-Prison” Pipeline: Was it in Mississippi?

Discussion in 'Civil Rights & Privacy' started by Mike, Dec 12, 2012.

  1. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    Time: The Worst “School-to-Prison” Pipeline: Was it in Mississippi?

    What do these school kids have in common? The teenage girl with a bladder disorder who left class without permission, ignoring a teacher and racing for a bathroom rather than wet herself; the boy who was rude to a school administrator; another who was tardy. They are children of color who, as a result of breaking minor school rules, were allegedly arrested and thrown into a juvenile detention facility in Meridian, Mississippi. It appears to be the most blatant case in a nationwide phenomenon that the U.S. Department of Justice, in a 37-page lawsuit, calls a “school-to-prison pipeline.”

    Following an eight-month investigation and a two-month warning period, the Justice Department in October filed a civil rights lawsuit against the city of Meridian, Lauderdale County, the Mississippi Department of Youth Services (DYS) and local Youth Court judges Frank Coleman and Veldore Young for violating the Fourth, Fifth and 14th Amendment rights of Meridian public school children.

    For six years or so, at least 77 children, some as young as 10 – all of them “children of color,” says Jody Owens, with the Southern Poverty Law Center–were routinely arrested at Meridian schools allegedly on the say-so of teachers or administrators, handcuffed and taken to jail where they were held for days on end without benefit of a hearing, a lawyer, or understanding their Miranda rights. Their parents or guardians weren’t notified of the arrests until the children were in lockdown in a facility the SPLC says was a hellhole of abuse and neglect.

    During a speech in April, Thomas Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, said students told him “of being escorted from school for crying while being paddled” and “of serving time in in-school suspension for wearing the wrong color socks.” In the case of disabled students, some were arrested for behavior symptomatic of the very illnesses that made them require special education plans. In most of these incidents, Owens says the children “didn’t even know who accused them.”

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  2. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

  3. nachtnebel

    nachtnebel Original Member

    hallelujah! 'bout time.
     

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