Think Justice Blog


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  • Krista Larson
    Krista Larson
October 17, 2016

Redefining Who Gets to be Called "Youth"

Every year, the President declares October National Youth Justice Awareness Month, and this year is no exception. On September 30, President Obama made the annual proclamation and gave the nation this charge: We must make sure youth in every community and fro...

  • Fred Patrick
    Fred Patrick
October 03, 2016

Obama pushes to end solitary confinement; states lead the way

In an Op-Ed in The Washington Post, President Barack Obama condemned solitary confinement and announced sweeping changes to its use in federal prisons nationwide. On any given day in the U.S., as many as 100,000 people are estimated to be held...

  • Kindred Motes
    Kindred Motes
September 29, 2016

Game day injustice? Judges dole out harsher sentences after home team upset

As the consensus for criminal justice reform grows, Americans are beginning to hear more about the implicit biases that shape everything from juvenile sentencing to the high number of people—particularly low-income people of color—incarcerated in the country’s...

  • Erin  Dostal Kuller
    Erin Dostal Kuller
September 15, 2016

Series: It Takes a Village

Collaboration is key when it comes to keeping kids out of the justice system

The title of our latest report on diversion strategies—“It Takes a Village”—is no accident. School administrators and teachers, law enforcement officials, service providers, and families all play key roles in keeping young people out of the juvenile justice sy...

  • Erin  Dostal Kuller
    Erin Dostal Kuller
September 07, 2016

Series: It Takes a Village

Closing the schoolhouse door to the juvenile justice system

Schools can be a critical diversion point for young people at risk of entering the juvenile justice system, as detailed in Vera’s recent report on diversion strategies for youth. Exclusionary school disciplinary practices, such as suspensions or expulsions, ma...

  • Erin  Dostal Kuller
    Erin Dostal Kuller
September 01, 2016

Series: It Takes a Village

Getting the word out about diversion programs

Diversion strategies that prioritize community- and family-based solutions over punitive measures can help young people avoid becoming involved in the justice system. Vera’s recent report detailed the important work of many organizations—from Nevada to Nebrask...

  • Monnero Guervil
    Monnero Guervil
  • Baz Dreisinger
    Baz Dreisinger
August 29, 2016

Series: Unlocking Potential

Increasing interest in and passion for learning throughout the prison system

Former intern Monnero Guervil interviews Baz Dreisinger for this blog post.  What inspired you to create John Jay College of Criminal Justice’s Prison-to-College Pipeline (P2CP) program? How does it differ, if at all, from other college in prison programs...

  • Daniel  Kodsi
    Daniel Kodsi
August 23, 2016

The end of federal private prisons is a big step towards reimagining criminal justice

The United States’ incarcerated population stands at more than 2.2 million. Nearly 1.6 million Americans are behind prison bars—only 22,000 of whom reside in privately managed federal facilities. So why are there headlines about Thursday’s Department of Justic...

  • Taylar Nuevelle
    Taylar Nuevelle
August 22, 2016

Series: Gender and Justice in America

Breaking the silence about women in prison

We like to think incarcerated women are so different from the general population. But that’s simply not true. I often say: If you want to understand sexism in America, go to a women’s prison. Gender bias for incarcerated women is the same bias that forces...

  • Charmaine  Davis
    Charmaine Davis
August 15, 2016

Series: Gender and Justice in America

Mass incarceration and its impact are devastating to women

9to5, National Association of Working Women—of which I am the Georgia chapter director—understands the devastating impact mass incarceration has on women. The rate of growth for female imprisonment has outpaced men by more than 50 percent between 1980 and 20...

  • Dr. Gero Meinen
    Dr. Gero Meinen
August 11, 2016

Observations from Rikers: A German’s first visit to the island

Last year, a high-ranking United States delegation of more than 25 members visited Germany to become informed about German prison policy. The delegation was led by Jeremy Travis, president of John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and Nick Turner, president and...

  • Insha Rahman
    Insha Rahman
August 05, 2016

There is no magic bullet to fixing bail

The belief that bail reform needs to happen in New York City is no longer a fringe position. Most New Yorkers agree that someone should not sit in jail simply because he or she lacks $500 to pay bail. But what that reform should look like is up for much debate...