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Sunday 16th of June 2019

Press Room

New York raises the age of criminal responsibility for juveniles who commit non-violent crimes

Thursday 20th of April 2017
Juvenile Justice in the world

On April 10th, New York joined the other 48 US states which do not automatically treat 16 and 17-year-olds as adults in criminal proceedings. Andrew Cuomo, governor of New York, signed a new bill raising the age of criminal responsibility to 18 years of age for those charged with non-violent crimes. The bill will also allow these minors to be moved out of adult prisons and into juvenile detention centres.


The New York age of responsibility was last set to 16 years of age in 1962, and will now be respectively raised to 17 years of age on October 1st, 2018, and to 18 years of age on October 1st, 2019.

Once the bill is fully implemented, children under 18 charged with non-violent crimes will no longer be treated as adults in the criminal justice system.

The IJJO welcomes this decision made by the state of New York, which is a big step forward for the rights of many children. In addition, the Observatory hopes that this reform is eventually applied to every person under 18, who should all have the right to benefit from a distinct juvenile justice system tailored to offer appropriate responses in accordance to their stage of development as adolescents.


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  • International Juvenile Justice Observatory (IJJO). Belgian Public Utility Foundation

    All rights reserved

  • Head Office: Rue Mercelis, nº 50. 1050. Brussels. Belgium

    Phone: 00 32 262 988 90. Fax: 00 32 262 988 99. oijj@oijj.org

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