This document identifies the actions that CDF-CA is pursuing in 2021 to ensure that children—particularly poor Black, Brown and Indigenous children—have what they need to realize their potential. Recognizing that children don’t come in pieces, our policy agenda focuses on actions that support the whole child including their families, the communities where they live, the systems meant to serve them, and their physical and mental health.
Building California’s Future: A Voter Guide to Championing Policies That Improve the Lives of California’s Children
The goal of this election guide is simple: to champion policies that improve the lives of California's children, particularly those who have been historically marginalized. We hope the information will make it easier to identify worthy candidates who understand the challenges facing children and families, and who commit to taking action to level the playing field for California's children, particularly poor children and children of color.
Learn more about SB 439 and view a profile of younger children's justice involvement in Los Angeles County.
On September 30, 2018, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill 439 to establish a minimum age of 12 years old for prosecuting youth in juvenile court in California, except in the most serious cases of murder and forcible rape. In response to the passage, the Board of Supervisors (Board) unanimously adopted a motion to set a minimum age for Los Angeles County’s juvenile justice system. The motion directs the Department of Health Services Office of Diversion and Reentry’s Division (ODR’s) of Youth Diversion and Development (YDD) to develop a comprehensive plan to divert younger children from juvenile court jurisdiction and detention.
“New Rights for Youth in Juvenile Halls, Camps & Ranches” arms young people, their families and advocates with the knowledge they need to protect the rights, health, education and safety of our young people locked up in local juvenile facilities. The new rights highlighted in this publication become effective Jan. 1, 2019 and are the result of 1½ years of advocacy by CDF-CA with statewide partners and formerly incarcerated individuals and family members. Read more
Juvenile Justice Crime Prevention Act in Los Angeles: A Case Study on Advocacy and Collaborative Reform
"Juvenile Justice Crime Prevention Act in Los Angeles: A Case Study on Advocacy and Collaborative Reform," written by CDF-CA in partnership with Anti-Recidivism Coalition, Urban Peace Institute and Youth Justice Coalition, tracks the history of the Juvenile Justice Crime Prevention ACT (JJCPA) in California, and more specifically, chronicles strategies used in LA County to improve community involvement in JJCPA governance and spending. Examining the strategies and impact of JJCPA programs is critical to ensuring that both a county and its Probation Department are in keeping with updated research and wisdom about what works to promote youth well-being and public safety.
The juvenile justice system in Los Angeles County has been broken for too long. The outdated, institutional, and sometimes harmful camps that house youth labeled "delinquent" have been just one glaring example. But beyond the system, reform efforts themselves have suffered at times - whether from mistrust, or too often happening in a vacuum or behind closed doors. A Culture of Care for All: Envisioning the LA Model describes a new approach for treating youth who incarcerated. This report, written by Hailly T.N. Korman (Bellwether Education Partners) and Carly B. Dierkhising (California State University - Los Angeles) captures nearly two years of thought and collaboration by more than 100 stakeholders coordinated by CDF-CA to articulate a shared vision of a new model of juvenile justice in Los Angeles, known as the LA Model. The LA Model has ten essential elements and [...]
In their report, "WIC 236 - ‘Pre-Probation' Supervision of Youth of Color With No Prior Court or Probation Involvement," Children's Defense Fund--California, Youth Justice Coalition, Urban Peace Institute and Anti-Recidivism Coalition argue that supervision by a law enforcement agency, like probation, is not the appropriate response to a demographic of overwhelmingly youth of color who are struggling with mostly school performance problems, like poor grades and attendance. The organizations hope to engage other community-based stakeholders and government agencies in examining WIC 236 supervision. Ultimately, they argue for shifting resources away from law enforcement entities towards education and community-based interventions that more appropriately serve youths' needs.
Untold Stories Behind One of America's Best Urban School Districts focuses on recent education equity and racial justice trends in LBUSD related to school climate. The report explores how students, especially students of color and high-need students--low-income, English Learner, special education, and foster youth--have been impacted in recent years by exclusionary school climate practices. The findings and recommendations in this report seek to encourage more district-community collaboration that supports student learning and a universal pathway to college and career for LBUSD students--particularly high-need students.