PRESS CONFERENCE: HRFK & Coalition Join Members of Congress to Introduce Juvenile Justice Reform
A bipartisan Congressional coalition led by Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-CA), Congressman Bruce Westerman (R-AR), and Congressman Tony Cárdenas is introducing a package of bills to change the way children are treated in the federal criminal justice system. This legislative package is intended to create more fair and age-appropriate accountability measures for children who come into conflict with the law and better align U.S. policy with universally accepted human rights standards. California and Arkansas have been national leaders when it comes to reforming the way the criminal justice system treats children. This bipartisan legislation is modeled after the policies in both states. Each member will speak about their respective legislation, followed by three individuals formerly incarcerated as youth who will explain why these policy changes are so important. Legislative reforms in this package include: ending life without parole sentences for children, establishing a minimum age for prosecuting children, and protecting the due process rights of children at the point of arrest, among others.