Legislation fulfilling recommendations of the Michigan Task Force on Juvenile Justice Reform was reported by the House Criminal Justice Committee this week. The entire bill package contains 20 bills, 10 of which were reported. The House bills are mirrored in Senate legislation, which is currently before the Senate Civil Rights and Judiciary Committee.
- Establishes a minimum framework for best practices statewide.
- Expand the Michigan Indigent Defense Commission to include development, oversight, and compliance with youth defense standards in local county defense systems.
- Requires the use of a validated risk screening tool and a validated mental health screening tool to inform diversion and consent calendar decisions.
- Expands the Diversion Act so that most, and the least severe offenses, are eligible for pre-court diversion based on established criteria and the use of a research-based risk screening tool.
- The 10 bills that were reported were sent to the House floor for consideration.
- The other 10 bills remain before the committee for further consideration.
The Michigan Task Force on Juvenile Justice Reform was established by Governor Gretchen Whitmer through executive order in 2021.