In response to reported incidents of violence, mismanagement and escapes from the state’s juvenile lockups, some Louisiana teens are now being temporarily housed in a notorious adult prison, the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola, NBC News reports. After announcing the decision, Gov. John Bel Edwards stressed that the move is temporary and aimed at reducing the population at the troubled Bridge City until more secure youth facilities can be built or renovated.
While federal law requires that juveniles be separated by sight and sound from adult prisoners, advocates and experts questioned whether that’s possible, especially with common shared facilities. Critics have also condemned the move outright, saying that it tramples modern principles of juvenile justice and that “moving kids to your adult maximum security prison campus, where you send adults to die, is the worst juvenile justice policy decision probably ever made in modern times.”