This Article uses one of Juvenile Law Center’s many victories, the case of the so-called “kids for cash” scandal of Luzerne County, Pennsylvania in 2008–2009, to look at the current state of juvenile justice and to look back at how we got here. This Article tackles the big, broad questions that inevitably leap to mind: How could something like this have happened? Why didn’t any of the many lawyers or caseworkers involved in the Luzerne County juvenile justice system step in to stop the abuses and protect the children? In a system that is governed by a rule of law, what happened to all of the procedural safeguards that should have prevented an abuse of this type and magnitude? In the course of addressing these questions, this Article looks back at the caselaw and developments in the juvenile justice field to try to identify factors that may have played a role.
Selling Kids Short: How “Rights for Kids” Turned into “Kids for Cash”
Volume 88, No. 4, Summer 2016