Smiling Sarah Bryer with dark hair and sunshine in the background.

Activists Must Take ‘Macro’ Approach, Address Fundamental Inequalities, NJJN’s Bryer Says

Sarah Bryer is planning to step down from her position as executive director of the National Juvenile Justice Network when her successor is chosen. The organization, which she led since its founding in 2005, works for a fairer juvenile justice system through a network of state-based reform organizations and with the alumni of its Youth Justice Leadership Institute. Here, Bryer talks with reporter Stell Simonton about the changes she’s seen and the continued challenges.

Bart Lubow: Cutting Youth Incarceration Doesn’t Cut Public Safety

Bart Lubow, who has been working for more than 20 years to reduce the number of youth being sent to detention centers, told a gathering of approximately 700 conference attendees this morning that now “may prove to be a unique moment in juvenile justice history, a time when, as a nation, we shed some of the system’s worst baggage—including our unnecessary and often inappropriate reliance on secure confinement” of youth. The conference attendees are in Houston for the Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative conference, which as its name implies is working to reduce the number of youth sent into detention and instead aims to provide community-centered alternatives. The conference is hosted by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. Apparently the 19-year quest is working. Lubow, director of the Juvenile Justice Strategy Group at the Casey Foundation, told the gathering that “JDAI sites have reduced reliance on secure detention overall by 42 percent, with numerous jurisdictions posting reductions in excess of 50 percent.” All of this happening without compromising public safety, he said.

May 06, 2011

Read up:

Governor Deal (GA) signs Human Trafficking bill into law:
http://bit.ly/k5dzBP

OJJDP census of kids on probation:
http://bit.ly/kidsonprobi

CDC teen pregnancy stats 1991-2009 [infographic]:
http://bit.ly/preginfo

Justice Department report sheds light on human trafficking stats:
http://bit.ly/traffstats

Youth Justice Barbecue celebrates year of progress:
http://bit.ly/voxbbq

Host: Ryan Schill
Video: Clay Duda

Youth Justice Barbecue Celebrates Juvenile Code Rewrite Progress

Advocates, youth and members of the public gathered this weekend at Exchange Park in Decatur, Ga. to celebrate a year of progress toward juvenile code reform in Georgia. VOX Teen Communications hosted the barbecue along with a coalition of youth-focused non-profits that have concentrated on making proposed changes to Georgia’s Juvenile Code a reality. JUSTGeorgia, EmpowerMEnt, the Sapelo Foundation and VOX Teen Communications have formed a mesh of alliances to give youth a voice in matters that affect them and advocate for the first changes in the Children’s Code in more than four decades. An initiative started by Giovan Bazan and Octavia Fugerson at VOX Teen Communications more than a year ago sought to collect the voices of youth from around the state who were directly affected by the juvenile or foster care systems. The series generated such a positive response it was pursued by EmpowerMEnt and spearheaded by Bazan and other youth leaders after the founders aged-out of work at VOX.