April 2019 Newsletter
We invite you to join us as we commemorate In re Gault, and proudly host an exclusive conversation with The Central Park Five Filmmaker, Sarah Burns and Exoneree, Yusef Salaam, who as a 15-year-old youth was arrested, convicted, and imprisoned for a crime he did not commit. Listen and be inspired as Yusef shares his Story of (In)justice and his incredible commitment towards building justice for all young people.
— Yusef Salaam
April 2019 — On any given day, nearly 50,000 youth in the United States are held in facilities, including detention and correctional facilities, as well as other types of secure and non-secure out-of-home placements.
NJDC is pleased to share the Juvenile Facilities Checklist for Defenders: Advocating for the Safety and Well-Being of Young People, a resource for juvenile defense lawyers to assess and monitor the safety of juvenile facilities used by juvenile courts.
April 2019 — Earlier this month, 18 juvenile defense lawyers from across California traveled to Berkeley for a Juvenile Training Immersion Program (JTIP) Trainer Certification hosted by the Pacific Juvenile Defender Center (PJDC).
These newly-certified JTIP trainers are now prepared to deliver the highly specialized, juvenile defense curriculum that helps lawyers meet their obligations at every stage of the delinquency system.
NJDC is thrilled to build the cadre of Certified JTIP Trainers prepared to strengthen the skills of juvenile defense lawyers in juvenile courts across the nation. Click here to learn more about JTIP.
March 2019 — NJDC facilitated a training session on Addressing Racial Bias for over 80 juvenile court judges at the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCFCJ) annual juvenile justice conference.
Judges in attendance engaged in a lively dialogue about the role of bias in decision-making and strategies for de-biasing their own decisions as well as structural policies that create disparities.
The training was based on the Addressing Bias bench card which is the fifth in a series of bench cards jointly developed by NCJFCJ and NJDC specifically for judges. Click here to download and learn more about the Addressing Bias bench card.
Orleans Parish Juvenile Court judge, Hon. Ernestine Gray and NJDC Executive Director, Mary Ann Scali discuss how to decrease racial disparities with judges at the NCFCJ Conference
March 2019 — New Utah legislation, SB32 signed into law requires every young person in juvenile court proceedings to be appointed a lawyer regardless of whether they can afford to pay for one or not. Prior to this point, and only in more recent years were youth facing felonies guaranteed an attorney in court.
SB32 also requires the attorney to be present at all court hearings, including detention hearings and review hearings. As Rep. Andrew Stoddard stated, “Juveniles are incredibly vulnerable. They need representation. And this gets it to them.”
Click here to learn more about SB32.
— Former juvenile system-involved Utah teen
On a juvenile record that a decade later prevents certain job opportunities
Utah Governor Gary Herbert signs SB32 into law requiring the appointment of counsel for all youth in juvenile court. (Community Resources for Justice)
March 2019 — Until recently, Nebraska only required the automatic sealing of juvenile court records only when cases were not filed or later dismissed. For youth involved in the state’s juvenile justice system, this meant having to wait until they reached the age of 17 to have their records sealed. The signing of LB354 into law now streamlines the sealing process and mandates the automatic sealing of all records for young people who complete their probation or a diversion program. Click here to learn more about LB354.
In Wyoming, young people will no longer have to petition the courts to have their records expunged as of July 1st. The new law streamlines the procedure for expungement of juvenile court records by giving prosecuting attorneys the authority to clear records on behalf of youth that are considered to be in good standing. Click here to learn more about WY HB0044.
— Senator Patty Pansing-Brooks
On sponsoring LB354 and wanting to give youth the chance to move on with their lives.