Restorative justice program manager, Yejide Ankobia, shares the impact of restorative practices and the transformative role that laws like the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) and the resources that come with it can play in a young person’s life.
Every day, it seems, criminal justice reform is in the news, and America finally seems to be taking the mass incarceration crisis seriously. Yet this focus has not extended to the progress made, and problems still faced, by young people caught up in the justice system.
In the past few years, we have seen more mainstream attention both from community members and influential leaders to a population that has largely been invisible: young people involved in the juvenile justice system. This fall alone, Pope Francis spoke out about injustice in our justice system, in particular involving children and youth.
Alicia Wilson-Ahlstrom shares the ways high-quality OST programs and The Readiness Project can employ practices that adults can put in place that increase the chance that young people develop the skill sets and mindsets to be ready for opportunities.
It is inconceivable that a system responsible for the administration of justice would allow such inequality and victimization to persist. We must do more to protect our nation’s young people. We need interagency cooperation to address the diverse needs and experiences of the nation’s most vulnerable youth.