Lena Taylor, Mandela Barnes, facing off for Senate seat, discuss alternatives to Lincoln Hills

MILWAUKEE -- Wisconsin Senate candidates face off in Milwaukee. Lena Taylor and Mandela Barnes are vying for Wisconsin's 4th Senate District seat, and both are already state legislators.

Milwaukee Press Club

Incumbent Senator Lena Taylor and Representative Mandela Barnes presented at the Milwaukee Press Club on Thursday, July 14th. Both are Democrats and both have supported similar legislation.

The two took on the issue of the Lincoln Hills School for Boys correctional facility in the Wausau area. The facility is under investigation following allegations of physical and sexual abuse, among other issues.

Lena Taylor

Both want the juvenile offenders in facilities closer to home. But they disagree about whether the Ethan Allen School for Boys in Waukesha County should be reopened.

"While reopening the doors of Ethan Allen is a wonderful idea, I'm all for it, because we need more regional facilities -- not just Ethan Allen but other places across the state that have juvenile offenders that send them off for rehabilitation," said Barnes.

Mandela Barnes

"I do not want to see Ethan Allen reopened. I want to see us do alternatives locally in our city and in our country. I'd like to see us work with counties that have done something other than sending their young people to Lincoln Hills, like Racine and see what collaborative things we can do regionally," said Taylor.

Barnes has been a state representative since 2012.

Taylor was elected to the Wisconsin Assembly in 2003, and was elected to the Wisconsin Senate a year later.