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What A Week for Youth Justice: Help Us Thank Our Advocates and Families

Monday, 22 April 2019

What A Week for Youth Justice: Help Us Thank Our Advocates and Families

As state legislative sessions are starting to come to a close, we are seeing some excellent progress in our state campaigns and with some of our other state partners.  If you need a little joy this week, please feel free to send inspirational tweets to the advocates and families leading these initiatives in the states:


Raising the Age:

  • Michigan's Senate and House Judiciary committees voted their respective raise the age bill packages favorably out of their committees. @raisetheageMI
  • The North Carolina Senate passed a bill to improve its raise the age law and to keep youth under 18 out of adult jails.  While the NC House passed a bill to allow for the expungement of records for youth prosecuted as adults when they were 16 or 17 for misdemeanors and Class H and I felonies committed before raise the age is implemented.  @raisetheage_NC
  • Last week, the South Carolina Senate passed its budget which included a budget proviso to implement raise the age July 1, 2019. @raisetheageSC
  • The NY Raise the Age Coalition put out first snapshotof progress that includes, for the first three months of implementation, 88% of felony-charged 16- year-olds had their cases transferred from the Youth Part of Criminal Court to the Family Court.  @raisetheageNY

Rolling Back Automatic Transfer:

  • Florida's Senate Appropriation's committee voted the Florida First Step Act favorably out of committee and the bill was amended to include reverse waiver for youth prosecuted as adults, it already included the elimination of mandatory direct file. @noplacefora child #floridafirststepact
  • The Oregon Senate passed a huge package to keep youth tried as adults in youth facilities, ending mandatory prosecution of youth charged as adults for certain offenses when they are 15, 16, or 17, requires that juvenile courts must have a hearing when there is a motion to waive, and establishes a parole review process for a youth who has served at least 15-years of their sentence. @aclu_or  @PSJoregon

Jail Removal:  

  • Washington State passed a bill in both houses to keep youth who have committed offenses while under 18 in youth facilities until age 25.  
  • Both Michigan and North Carolina’s active bills include jail removal provisions. @raisetheageMI @raisetheage_NC


  • Last week, Nevada's assembly passed Sara's Law to give judges discretion to depart from mandatory sentencing and adult dispositions for youth who commit offenses against those who sexually abused or trafficked them.  @rights_for_kids @sarakruzaniamu
  • In Hawaii, both chambers passed versions of Sara’s Law and they will now go to conference. @rights_for_kids @sarakruzaniamu
  • Congressman Bruce Westerman introduced a package in the US House of representatives also supporting Sara’s law at the federal level. @rights_for_kids @sarakruzaniamu