Fair Sentencing for Youth

 

   

Take Action! Thank your local legislator!

Celebrate Children’s Rights Progress!

We played a big role in three significant wins for California children this year.

Help us thank leaders who stood up for children’s rights! It is important for policymakers to know that we appreciate their support for SB 394, AB 1308, and SB 395. If you do not know who your representatives are, use this easy search engine.

Call Governor Brown at (916) 445-2841, or send him a tweet at @JerryBrownGov to say thanks.

See if your representative voted for these bills, and get their phone numbers and twitter handles here.

The call is as simple as: “My name is ___________, and I am calling to thank the Governor [or Senator, or Assembly Member] for supporting these important bills, SB 394, AB 1308, and SB 395.”

The tweet could say: “Thank you [@twitterhandle] for supporting [#SB394/#SB395/#AB1308] and advancing #childrensrights in #CA! @hrw.”

SB 394 means children in California will no longer be sentenced to die in prison. It gives people who committed a crime under age 18 and were sentenced to life without parole the chance to earn release and come home. No other country outside the US imposes life without parole sentences on children.

AB 1308 protects transition-age youth sent to prison, giving them special opportunities by extending eligibility for “Youth Offender Parole” through age 25. The new law means young people will be treated fairly, and have a better chance at parole.

SB 395 protects children in police custody, ensuring that they’re not alone when making complex legal decisions, like whether to give up their rights. Now, police in California will not be able to interrogate children age 15 and under until a child has consulted with an attorney.

Senate Bill 1391 heads to Governor’s desk!

Senate Bill 1391, which would stop California from transferring 14- and 15-year-olds to the adult court system, passed out of the Senate after a concurrence vote on August 30th. The bill is now headed to Governor Brown’s desk for his signature. Head on over to this page, and take action by writing a letter to the Governor, and ask him to sign SB 1391. Learn more about the bill here.

 

Senate Bill 1391 passes in the State Assembly!

Senate Bill 1391 (Lara) passed in the State Assembly late last night, with a 41-23 vote. The bill is now returning to the Senate for a concurrence vote, before heading to Governor Brown’s desk.

We are grateful to our powerful coalition of advocates, formerly incarcerated people, activists, and community members who care about protecting our 14- and 15-year-old youth.

We need your help one more time! Please head over to our Take Action page, and learn how you can ask Governor Brown sign this important bill into law!

 

Call your Assembly Member and tell them to vote yes on SB 1391.

In California, children as young as 14 are given adult sentences, including life in prison.

This shouldn’t happen. If you live in California or know someone who does, make a call.  

1 easy call + 2 minutes of your time = Keep kids under 16 from being tried as adults & sentenced to life in prison.

Do you have a loved one sentenced to prison? Think about those who were sentenced to prison at age 14 or 15. Help end this practice: CLICK HERE FOR EASY INSTRUCTIONS. The next few days may be your last chance to help pass a law that would stop California from sending youth under 16 to the adult system.  

August 21st CARESCall Welcomes Senator Skinner


Join the CARESCall as we welcome the Honorable Nancy Skinner, California State Senator on Tuesday, August 21st, at 8 pm. Everyone is welcome. Call: (515) 604-9384 Code: 313882#  Senator Skinner will lead a detailed discussion on SB 1437, which aims to reform the Felony Murder Rule in California.The Felony Murder Rule disproportionately affects youth and people of color, and people are given harsh and unjust prison sentences. The current law has devastated many families and communities, and the bill would bring fairness and proportionate sentencing to the California justice system.

Tonight, August 7th at 8pm CARES for Youth Call guest Dawn Davison, former California state prison warden

Join CARES for Youth when we welcome retired California state prison warden Dawn Davison to the CARES call. With over 30 years at the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR), Ms. Davison worked at California Institute for Women, Calipatria, Lancaster, California Rehabilitation Center, and other prisons. As a warden, she instituted many rehabilitative programs and worked with volunteer groups, emphasizing education, life, and workplace skills; the maintenance of family and community relationships; successful reintegration into society; and breaking the inter-generational cycle of incarceration.
After retiring in 2009, Ms. Davison has remained active on nonprofit boards and as a consultant and activist for the rights of people in prison. She is also a “special consultant” to the Female Offender Programs and Services of CDCR. On this CARES call, Ms. Davison will give us a brief history of her work for the CDCR and her insights on what it takes to successfully rehabilitate and to earn parole. She will answer your questions and is sure to provide excellent advice.
This evening is a special opportunity to learn from a highly experienced correctional professional who has our loved ones’ interests in mind.

Join the CARES for Youth
Call as we welcome
Dawn Davison
Former California State Prison Warden
Tuesday, August 7th, at 8 pm
Everyone is welcome.
Call: (515) 604-9384
Code: 313882#

SB 1391 passes in the Assembly Public Safety Committee!

Senate Bill 1391 passed in the CA Assembly Committee on Public Safety on June 26th, with a 5-2 vote. It is now headed to the Assembly Committee on Appropriations.

We had a successful day of visits with Assembly members yesterday, and we need your support in asking your Assembly members to vote yes on SB 1391. Click on this link and take action, support #SB1391!

Bill to End California Sending 14- & 15-Year-Olds to the Adult Criminal System to be Voted on!

An important effort to end the trying of youth as adults is headed to a committee vote on June 26th! Help SB 1391 pass by clicking here for easy-to-use  letters of support.

 

 

Tuesday, June 19th at 8pm CARES for Youth Call guest Shaka Senghor

Shaka Senghor tells his story of redemption and vision as the new director of the Anti-Recidivism Coalition.

He was powerful in his TED Talk, powerful in an interview with Oprah, and he’ll be powerful, here, too. Shaka is the new Executive Director of the Anti-Recidivism Coalition. His memoir, is Writing My Wrongs: Life, Death and Redemption in an American Prison, is a tribute to human strength, and his TED Talk, “Why your Worst Deeds Don’t Define You” reminds us that our worst deeds don’t define who we are or what we can contribute to the world. Join us to hear this powerful speaker.

Tuesday, June 19th at 8pm
Call: (515) 604-9384
Code: 313882#

 

Join the CARES Call June 5th at 8pm

Sexual abuse. Sex trafficking. Violence against girls. 
In a perverse twist of justice, many girls who experience abuse are routed into the justice system because of their victimization. Violence against girls is a painfully American tale. Our guests on Tuesday will talk about 

Violence against girls is a painfully American tale.
The facts are staggering: one in four American girls will experience some form of sexual violence by the age of 18. Fifteen percent of sexual assault and rape victims are under the age of 12; nearly half of all female rape survivors were victimized before the age of 18. Many end up in the criminal justice system. Our guests will talk about the reality of girls being victimized, and how to stop an abusive system response. Read this important report to learn more: THE SEXUAL ABUSE TO PRISON PIPELINE: THE GIRLS’ STORY.
Join the call: (515) 604-9384  Code: 313882#