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House Passes Bill to Simplify Disclosure of Juvenile Delinquent Information

Friday, April 6, 2012, Juneau, Alaska – The Alaska House today passed a bill by Juneau Representative Cathy Muñoz to simplify and streamline the current law on public disclosure of information relating to juvenile delinquents and make it easier for the state to release appropriate details of a minor’s case to the public.

“State officials say the current statute is cumbersome and difficult to implement,” Muñoz, R-Juneau, said. “House Bill 343 establishes straightforward criteria for the release of juvenile information in cases of serious crimes – when the minor has been adjudicated a delinquent.”

HB 343 will allow those with a legitimate interest – such as former clients who once were children in state custody, their parents, or guardians – to have access to old records from the Division of Juvenile Justice to help them apply for jobs, obtain student loans, or get health care.

Muñoz introduced the measure at the request of the Division and the Office of Children’s Services (OCS). Both agencies support the legislation approved today by the House.

HB 343 also is designed to improve the sharing of information between the Division and OCS to help the two agencies better protect, rehabilitate, and provide necessary services to children.

The House passed HB 343 this morning on a vote of 37 to 0. It now moves to the Alaska Senate for consideration.

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