Runaway juvenile laws are counterproductive and generate a ton more harm than good.
From personal experience I was a foster kid, I was “abused” and “treated” horribly in the system meant to protect and love me. I ran away at 15 and began working, but I was never able to truly escape all the arrests and juvenile detention time because I had to go to school with my work. At 17 I was set free, I guess because I was too old and inconvenient.
I really don’t see the point of trying to return any teenager 13 or above, toddlers run away unintentionally, and teenagers typically have good reasons. Besides anecdotal experience, there are studies that show these laws do more harm.
– A recent study found that 79% of homeless youth reported experiencing multiple instances of childhood abuse.3
– According to Missed Opportunities: Youth Homelessness in America, around one in 10 young adults ages 18 to 25 and at least one in 30 youth ages 13 to 17 experienced unaccompanied homelessness within a 12-month period. This equates to an estimated 4.2 million youth and young adults in the U.S., about the same as the population of Los Angeles or the combined populations of Houston, TX, Seattle, WA, Washington, DC, and Atlanta, GA.
I know some common arguments are going to come in and I’ll address them beforehand.
“What about lack of employment or schooling?”
Kids who end up in juvenile detention don’t get schooling, or jobs either. They’re locked in a vicious cycle of homelessness worse than that of most homeless adults. Homeless adults by far in the population are less than that minors because it’s easier to get a job and lift yourself on your feet.
“What about kidnapping and sex trafficking?”
Most kidnapped people were not originally runaways, and what is considered sex trafficking has a very low bar, for example, if you were under 18 and gave a blowjob willingly to someone over 18 for money that’s sex trafficking.
submitted by /u/Ab0l1shRunawayLaws
Article from r/Libertarian: For a Free Society