City leaders can increase public safety and improve outcomes for young residents by changing how their cities respond to young people implicated in delinquent acts or accused of crimes. When city policies end up channeling large numbers of youth into a juvenile justice system that emphasizes arrests and detention, these policies inadvertently jeopardize rather than enhance public safety and security, particularly in high-crime neighborhoods. At the same time, when young people who come to the attention of law enforcement for low-level offenses (e.g., school truancy, drug use or petty theft) are treated as more serious criminals, these decisions reduce the likelihood that these youth can regain their footing and greatly diminish their future prospects.