Campaign For Youth Justice Belief Statement
At the Campaign for Youth Justice (CFYJ) we believe that for all children to thrive, we must commit to anti-racism work that involves addressing both internal and external racial and ethnic bias within ourselves, our organizations, our communities, our institutions, and our collective values.
We must acknowledge and reconcile the promise of the American dream with the reality of slavery, displacement, and racial and ethnic terror that served as the foundation of our country’s economy.
We must acknowledge that we are responsible for maintaining and supporting systems that perpetuate oppression and subjugation as a vestige of slavery, genocide, and exclusionary immigration policies.
We must confront, reflect upon, and stop taking actions that maintain or contribute to racial and ethnic bias, harm, and disparate negative outcomes against people of color.
We must commit to dismantling and reimagining a transformative justice system that provides accountability and consequences, but prioritizes the restoration of survivors and those who have committed harm over punishment.
A part of this legacy is the adultification of youth which is inherently racist and must be abolished in our laws, policies, and practices by:
- Requiring resources that are currently directed to harmful institutions and practices to be reinvested into impacted communities to support the potential of and increase opportunities for children.
- Amplifying and supporting the leadership of directly impacted youth and their loved ones to steer campaigns and direct how resources are spent in their communities.
- Dedicating substantial human and financial resources into transformative justice by investing in policies, practices, and laws that heal and advance hope and peace.
- Elevating the intersection with other vulnerable populations, including gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, immigration status, socio-economic status, and disability.
- The Campaign for Youth Justice is committed to awakening, confronting, and transforming ourselves, our communities, our institutions, and our values to reflect our core beliefs in equity, humanity, and justice for all.