In a sense all courts solve problems, although traditionally the approach is punitive — translating a crime into how many months or years a defendant owes society and warehousing him or her in a prison.
While not excusing drug abuse, domestic violence, child neglect and other ills, problem-solving courts take a therapeutic solution-oriented approach to reduce recidivism and guide offenders toward productive lives.
By the time youth first enter the justice system, the vast majority of them have witnessed and/or have been victim to some type of violence and are struggling to cope with the fallout of those experiences.
Riots are often Rorschach tests. People see what they want to see in the images of burning buildings and looting stores: either as animals who need to be thrown into a cage, or young people in need of jobs, criminal justice reform and an education system that prepares them for something more than street hustling.
“There’s a bias effect,” Sinocruz said. “If I see a student has been disciplined three times for ‘insubordination,’ ‘disrespect,’ some of these categories that are overly vague and capture very minor incidents, it’s hard not to look at the students as somehow disrespectful, even if it was for a minor thing.
“A lot of times the categories that are used are much stronger, much more punitive-sounding than what actually happened.”
Through comedic hijinks and some explicit visuals of drugs, guns and a scantily clad woman, “Dope” opens the eyes of viewers to the challenging lives many of our urban youths experience while trying desperately not to get trapped in a waterfall of stereotypes and statistics.
Each year in the United States, several million children witness the arrest of a parent.
These arrests are most likely to be for domestic violence, drug-related incidents and property crimes, according to a report from the Office of Justice Programs Diagnostic Center, an agency of the U.S. Department of Justice.
NEW YORK — More than 40 national and state organizations dedicated to juvenile justice reform posted a joint letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state legislature on the need to raise the age of criminal responsibility to 18.