Policy Briefs


Policy Reform Series

 

The Campaign for Youth Justice has released several policy briefs highlighting the latest policy statements of juvenile and criminal justice system stakeholders, state policy reforms, and opportunities for reform.  This series showcases the key reasons reforms are underway and provide tools and information for advancing further reforms.

 

Snapshot of National Organizations' Policy Statements on Youth in the Adult Criminal Justice System This policy brief provides an overview of the major policy statements of juvenile and criminal justice system stakeholder groups and professional associations and examples of statements advancing removal of youth from adult jails and prisons and reducing the prosecution of youth in adult court.

Authors: Jill Ward and Liz Ryan. Published: October 2012.

 

Keeping Youth Out of Adult Jails and Prisons: New Opportunities Through State Policy Changes and New Federal Regulations This policy brief captures the major reasons why youth should be removed from adult facilities and provides recommendations for policy reforms, resources and next steps.

Author: Liz Ryan. Published: October 2012.

 

Youth in the Adult Criminal Justice System This policy brief showcases the latest data about youth in the adult criminal justice system, key arguments for reform and recommendations for change.

Author: Liz Ryan. Published: October 2012.

 

 

Race and Ethnicity Series

 

The Campaign for Youth Justice has released a several volumes in a series of briefs focusing on how transfer affects youth in each race and ethnicity.  This highly successful series demonstrates the unique impact that transfer policies have on different segments of the population, from disproportionate rates of contact to the complicated intersection of different judicial systems to the inefficiencies in data collection.

 

America's Invisible Children: Latino Youth and the Failure of Justice. CFYJ and NCLR have just released the latest volume in the Race and Ethnicity Series, focusing on Latino youth in the justice system.  In addition to providing the latest facts about Latino youth in the U.S. justice system, the report highlights promising solutions and policy recommendations to reduce the disparities.

Authors: Neelum Arya, Francisco Villarruel, Cassandra Villanueva and Ian Augarten.  Published: May 2009.

Race and Ethnicity Series Policy Brief Vol 3 (PDF 1 MB)

Fact Sheet

Press Release

 

Critical Condition: African-American Youth in the Justice System An examination of how African-American youth are disproportionately affected by transfer laws. Key findings include that most African-American youth are transferred by statutory exclusion or prosecutorial waiver mechanisms, many are not convicted (suggesting that the cases brought against them are not very strong), and that most youth prosecuted in the adult system are not serious violent offenders.

Authors: Neelum Arya, Ian Augarten, Hilary O. Shelton. Published: September 2008.

Race and Ethnicity Series Policy Brief Vol 2 (PDF 881 KB)

Fact Sheet

Press Release

 

A Tangled Web of Justice: American Indian and Alaska Native Youth in Federal, State, and Tribal Justice Systems An examination of how Native American youth are disproportionately affected by transfer laws. Key findings include that many Native American youth commit low-level offenses and receive either no court intervention or disproportionately severe sanctions. Also examines the interaction of the tribal justice system with the state and federal justice systems and how that impacts youth transfer.

Author: Neelum Arya and Addie C. Rolnick. Published: July 2008.
Race and Ethnicity Series Policy Brief Vol 1 (PDF 4.1 MB)

 

 

Inaugural Adultification Series

 

A series of policy briefs examining of youth transfer in all its stages: arrest, trial, sentencing and detention stages.  The series exposes transfer's negative impact on youth, particular minority youth, and better alternatives for youth placement.


Return Them to Juvenile Court A criticism of the punitive dimensions of historic and recent policies that have placed juveniles in the criminal courts, this brief also describes rationales that better fit society's interests in strengthening juveniles to be well-adjusted youth, rather than risking their futures and society's interests with their incarceration as criminals.

Author: H. Ted Rubin.  Published: 2007.
Adultification Policy Brief Vol 1 (PDF 888 KB)

Youth Transferred to Adult Court: Racial Disparities This policy brief documents the negative consequences that accompany the practice of trying youthful offenders as adults, both for youth in general and for youth of color in particular.

Author: Amanda Burgess-Proctor, Kendal Holtrop and Francisco A. Villarruel.  Published: 2007.
Adultification Policy Brief Vol 2 (PDF 784 KB)

Children Being Tried as Adults: Pre-Trial Detention Laws in the U.S. A run-down of the pre-trial detention laws for each of the 51 jurisdictions in the United States (50 states plus the District of Columbia). Includes information on the negative effects of holding youth pre-trial in adult facilities.

Authors: Melissa Goemann, Tracy Evans, Eileen Geller and Ross Harrington. Published: April 2007.
Adultification Policy Brief Vol 3 (PDF 209 KB)


Perpetual Punishment: The Consequences of Adult Convictions for Youth An examination of the long-term consequences of adult conviction for a youth, including federal legislation barring access to federal programs (food stamps, public assistance, public housing, etc) as well as state legislation over criminal history anonymity, employment barriers and other essentials to becoming a productive citizen.

Author: Alexa Eggleston.  Published: 2007.
Adultification Policy Brief Vol 4 (PDF 476 KB)