It isn’t often that a district attorney’s race draws as much national attention as the one in Philadelphia did last fall. While much of the country was bemoaning the new national rhetoric that indicated a sharp departure from America’s centrist values on crime and punishment, Philadelphia was singing a different tune.
At 7 a.m., teenagers are scurrying to dress and head to class. There are no parents or older siblings nearby to push them out of bed and out the door. And the commute isn’t long — just a short walk from prison bed to classroom.
Youth placed in juvenile justice institutions face a fundamental obstacle in their career pathway: They have been removed from their communities and lack access to the full array of educational and job...
As any high schooler can tell you, finding paid work experience in today’s economy can be a real challenge. But youth with disabilities in the juvenile justice and foster care systems face a particularly difficult...
In today’s world, having access to your vital records (birth certificate, Social Security card, state ID card) is, in fact, vital. The consequences system-involved youth experience by not having these essential records include potential housing instability, the inability to pursue certain educational opportunities and financial aid, and lack of access to public benefits. Not having identification can also be a barrier to employment. This is the situation Bruce Morgan, Juvenile Law Center’s youth advocate alum, faced.
As the Labor Day weekend approaches, officials in Philadelphia have decide to extend a curfew on young people they say has been effective in extinguishing flash mobs. The summertime curfew has been in effect the last few weeks, since a group of teens attacked several people in the city’s downtown. A spokesman for Mayor Michael Nutter told the Philadelphia Inquirer the curfew is working and would be extended until the start of the regular school year on Sept. 6. After that, students will find themselves subject to the city’s school-year ordinance that makes kids aged 13-17 subject to a 10:30 weekday, and a midnight weekend, curfew.
ABOUT A MONTH after I became the interim chief executive officer of the School District of Philadelphia, in 2000, I was greeted with a damaging report by a subcommittee of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives detailing rampant violence in the city's schools. Violence is a serious problem that the district "attempts to downplay, if not conceal," the report asserted. Now, a decade later, the Philadelphia Inquirer has placed a spotlight on the district once again in an updated and detailed encore, a multipart series on school violence. Reports of violence in the city's schools aren't new now, nor were they a decade ago. Three decades ago, a 1980 Philadelphia Evening Bulletin article proclaimed "student beatings are up 24 percent in Philadelphia."