Ware Youth Center Responds

This is the statement the Journal received from Ware Youth Center in response to the Journal’s request for comment on an investigative story published October 30th by the New York Times.

“While Ware Youth Center would love to have the opportunity to discuss the content of this news article, it cannot and will not discuss the records of current or past juveniles who have been remanded to its detention, intensive residential, or group home programs.  Releasing information on minors is prohibited by Louisiana state statutes, and juvenile criminal offenses are sealed upon a juvenile attaining age 18. 

“Ware Youth Center is tasked with detaining juveniles who are charged or convicted with crimes of varying degrees up to murder, rape, and other violent criminal acts.  Having operated three decades in parishes that previously had no juvenile detention facilities, Ware Youth Center has successfully served over 13,000 juveniles. 

“While Louisiana currently grapples with the challenge of detaining juveniles who are charged with very serious crimes and who become more violent while incarcerated, Ware Youth Center is the only juvenile justice entity in our state that implements the Missouri Youth Services Institute (MYSI) in all its programs.  This is a therapeutic rehabilitation model, and Ware Youth Center has invested over $400,000.00 in it to date.  More information on this program can be found at mysiconsulting.org.

“As widely reported, some detained juveniles are so violent and destructive that plans are underway to house many at Angola State Penitentiary.  Ware Youth Center’s model for therapeutic rehabilitation is critical, and housing juveniles in northwest Louisiana is important for those in detention who are charged with crimes in the local parishes Ware Youth Center serves.”

Photo Credit:  New York Times

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