Sustainability of Juvenile Diversion in Brooklyn (as funded by Public Welfare Foundation)
Above: Informational flyer for one of several trainings held for New York City Criminal Court judges.
Project Update! The New York Task Force has organized a training for the judges that will focus on the science behind adolescent behavior – the implications for understanding adolescents and practical ideas for improving outcomes in the courts.
The Racial Justice Improvement Project's Kings County Task Force (through funding from the Public Welfare Foundation) began sponsoring judicial training sessions for New York City Criminal Court judges in April 2014. New York City Criminal Court has preliminary jurisdiction over all arrests processed in the five counties of New York City and, in 2013, handled over 365,000 arraignments with over 368,000 new cases filed.
The topics include Adolescents and the Law - The Science of the Developing Adolescent Brain and Recent Developments in Law, Procedures and Programs, and mental health training on Court-based Intervention Resource Team (CIRT), a new mental health screening/services program for incarcerated individuals. The programs are designed to educate members of the judiciary on new developments in the science of the adolescent brain and on improved interventions for mentally ill individuals in the criminal justice system. In New York City, people of color are disproportionately over-represented in the criminal justice system, therefore reform to any part of the system will have a positive racial impact.
This year's program builds on the well-received cultural competency training held for New York City Criminal Court judges in 2013, and also furthers the successful Kings County Task Force pilot project Desk Appearance Ticket- Youth Program (DAT-Y), which resulted in lower recidivism rates for the participants (versus the control group). The DAT-Y Program offered 16 & 17 year old youths arrested for misdemeanor offenses, a disproportionate number of whom were youth of color, the opportunity for dismissal of charges after successful participation in a workshop on critical thinking.
Project Update! Please click here for the program for Brooklyn's upcoming One Day Seminar for Criminal Court Judges to be held on April 11 and 25, 2014 at Kings Supreme Court at 320 Jay Street. This year's program was fashioned using evaluations from previous year's programs and suggested topics submitted by your colleagues.