Weekly Notes: Congressional Hearing on Girls in JJ; Blogs of Note; and more

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A very quick, late Friday notes: We’re hard at work on a story for the November issue of Youth Today about a relatively new brand of technology used by a few juvenile justice and child welfare systems (definitely worth a read). Also look for a piece in the November issue by Jamaal Abdul-Alim on Chicago’s massive strategy to save youths from getting shot.

*** House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security will hold a hearing this Tuesday (Oct. 20) on girls in the juvenile justice system. For D.C. area people who can attend live, it’s in the Rayburn building 2141 at 2:30 pm; for others, it might be webcast on the committee’s website.

Slated to testify are:

-LaWanda Ravoira, director of the Center for Girls and Young Women (Jacksonville, Fla.);

-Eileen Larence, director of homeland security and justice issues for the Government Accountability Office;

-Tiffany Rivera, Girls Educational and Mentoring Services (New York);                                     

-Nadiyah Shereff, an adviser at the Center for Young Women’s Development (San Francisco);

-Dr. C. Jackie Jackson, executive director of Girls Inc. of the Greater Peninsula (Hampton, Va.); and

-Thomas Stickrath, director of the Ohio Department of Youth Services.

***The National Center for Children in Poverty released a brief report online about adolescent violence and unintentional injury. Good, quick reference, and the HTML version links you to the larger studies from which the center drew its report.

***Two other D.C. events to mark on your calendar from the Society for International Development’s Youth In Development Work Group, which appears to be coordinated by nonprofits IREX and the International Youth Foundation. Jan. 14 the group will host “Using New Technology to Reach Hard-to-Reach Youth,” and on April Fool’s day it will do “Engaging the Private Sector in Youth Development Programming.” Check the website for details.

***California has been told to downsize its adult prison population, and intends to follow the blueprint it set for itself when it downsized the state juvenile system: winnow down the numbers in state prisons, make county jails hold more inmates and provide funds to help them do it. The state JJ population was already well on its way down when the state started reforming its rules in 2007 though, and there is still lots of available bed space now at the county level for juveniles. It is far less certain that counties can absorb a massive downsizing of the adult prisons.

***JJ Today came across two blogs in the past week worth passing along. First, the Department of Justice has had one since August for its leaders to post statements on. Nothing earth-shattering on juvenile justice as of yet, but worth noting it’s existence.

The other is a must-link for readers interested in issues related to status offenders. Promises to Keep is the personal blog of Dr. Harriet Boorhem, who runs Dallas-based Promise House. Boorhem often writes about her successes, dilemmas and frustrations as Promise House attempts to serve runaway and homeless youth in the Dallas area. Great read, so rare to have a CEO-level person keep a somewhat open book on their job.