Juvenile Law Center

Pursuing justiceA Juvenile law center Blog

May 29, 2014

California Supreme Court Provides Second Chance for Inmates Sentenced to Life Without Parole as Juveniles

posted by Juvenile Law Center

The California Supreme Court recently made it clear that statutes cannot have a presumption in favor of life without parole for juvenile offenders.

In the wake of the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Miller v. Alabama in June 2012, banning mandatory juvenile life without parole sentences (JLWOP), Juvenile Law Center has argued in cases across the country on behalf of inmates who were sentenced to mandatory JLWOP before Miller was decided.

As kids, these inmates were sentenced to spend the rest of their lives in prison, without any consideration of their age, personal history, or other influences. There was no consideration as to whether they were truly unable to be rehabilitated and to ever rejoin society—all factors that Miller says courts must now consider before sentencing a kid to JLWOP.

Tags:Juvenile and Criminal Justice|Juvenile Life Without Parole (JLWOP)
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May 27, 2014

Growing Up Female in Foster Care: An Interview with Larbriah Morgan, Juvenile Law Center Youth Advocate

posted by Claire Glass, Intern, Juvenile Law Center

On May 13, 2014, the Stoneleigh Foundation held the symposium “What About the Girls?” to address these unique risk factors. Panelists included Malika Saada Saar, executive director of the Human Rights Project for Girls; Leslie Acoca, president of the National Girls Health and Justice Institute; Gwendolyn Bailey, executive director of Youth Service, Inc.; and Larbriah (Briah) Morgan, a Juvenile Law Center Youth Advocate.

Juvenile Law Center intern Claire Glass sat down with Briah after the symposium (and her final exams). They discussed the realities she’ll face when she turns 21 and “ages out” of the system in early June, and how she thinks the system could be improved to help more foster youth both make it to and succeed in college and find stable housing.

Tags:Access to Education|Youth Fostering Change|Access to Healthcare|Child Welfare and Foster Care|Extended Care and Reentry (Foster Care)|Fostering Connections|Normalcy for Foster Youth|Permanency (Foster Care)|Transitions to Adulthood (Foster Care)|Youth Engagement Programs
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May 21, 2014

"Kids for Cash" Film Now Available On Demand and As a Digital Download!

posted by Juvenile Law Center

Following a successful nationwide theatrical run, the acclaimed documentary Kids for Cash will be released across all leading Video On Demand and digital platforms today!

Tags:Juvenile and Criminal Justice|Luzerne Kids for Cash Scandal
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May 14, 2014

National Foster Care Month: Letting Foster Kids Be Kids

posted by Juvenile Law Center

While National Foster Care Month reminds us of the unique situation of youth who are removed from their families and placed in foster care, it is also important to think about how strongly youth in foster care just want to be treated like “average” kids. 

Far too often, the foster care system creates barriers to youth having the “normal” experiences of adolescence. Most people don’t realize that in many states, foster youth cannot date, go to sleepovers, work, or participate in extracurricular activities.

Tags:Child Welfare and Foster Care|Fostering Connections|Normalcy for Foster Youth|Permanency (Foster Care)|Transitions to Adulthood (Foster Care)
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May 13, 2014

Help Protect Kids in Adult Facilities: Tell Your State to Support the Prison Rape Elimination Act!

posted by Juvenile Law Center

The Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) was signed into law in 2003 to protect our country’s bloated prison and jail population from sexual abuse, and in particular, to address the widespread sexual assault and rape of youth housed in adult facilities. More than a decade later, however, youth are still being raped, waiting for the protection they deserve in facilities nationwide.

Tags:Juvenile and Criminal Justice|Reducing Transfers to the Adult System|State and Federal Legislation
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