State still holds reins over youth lockups

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After Jan. 1 takeover. Six juvenile treatment and correctional facilities that were unexpectedly taken over by the state in January will not be returning to private hands anytime soon, a spokesman for Governor Hutchinson said last week. On Dec. 16, Hutchinson directed the Arkansas Department of Human Services' Division of Youth Services (DYS) to assume provisional management of the lockups in response to a political dispute over which private entity would be awarded a DYS contract to run the facilities. Although they have always been owned and overseen by the state, the DYS has paid two Arkansas-based nonprofits to operate the lockups for over two decades. In 2016, however, the agency decided to switch to an...

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