raise the age

Raise the Age bills head to MI Senate

Oct 14, 2019

It has been two and half years since the Raise the Age bills were introduced to the Michigan legislature, and finally compromise was reached last Wednesday when the bills passed out of committee. 

“This package has ironed out all the differences between the house and senate versions and so the expectation is that within the next week or two this will be passed entirely and sent to the Governor’s desk for her signature.” 

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Michigan is one of only four states that automatically prosecutes all 17-year-olds as adults for any offense. Although the bill was introduced nearly two years ago, it wasn’t until this past Thursday that the Senate Judiciary Committee Meeting heard from fellow legislators of the bill’s implications. Here is Senator Sylvia Santana, one of the lead sponsors of the bill. 

“In my humble opinion MDOC is not equipped to raise children in the adult system nor support their cognitive needs to get them back on the right track.”

It has been a year and a half, since the Raise the Age bill was introduced to the Michigan legislature by Republican representative Jeff Noble. This week, the bill was discussed by the law and justice committee of the legislature. 

According to Jenny Kinne, Community Engagement Specialist for the Michigan League of Public Policy, this bill has the potential to change the way 17 year olds are treated in the criminal justice system.