Fair Sentencing for Youth



Take Action

Support SB 1052: MIRANDA RIGHTS FOR YOUTH! Write a letter to OR call your Assembly Member.

If passed, a youth under age 18 would get to consult with an attorney before waiving Miranda rights. NEW LETTERS ARE NOW NEEDED. The bill is now in the Assembly. It will be harder to pass it there. Please write a letter to your Assembly Member today!

Click here for an easy sample letter you can use! Find out who your Assembly Member is and their phone number here.

It is very powerful for an Assembly Member to hear from his or her constituents. Making phone calls is a quick and easy way to get your opinion across and can have great impact.

Follow the simple instructions below to call your representative:

  1. When you call, you can say something like this:
    1. Hello, I am a constituent and am calling to support a bill.
      Pause and wait a second. This will give the person time to grab the notebook or whatever is used to write down who calls.
    2. It is Senate Bill 1052 by Senator Lara.
      Speak slowly.
    3. Would you please let the Assembly Member know I called to urge him/her to support SB 1052?
    4. If the person on the phone asks why you support the bill or if you wish to make a statement, (usually they do not ask this) keep it short and simple. You can say something like: 
      This bill is fair for youth. We should make sure young people understand their rights.

Click here for a fact sheet on SB 1052.

In California, children—no matter how young—can waive their rights. This bill would require youth be given the chance to consult with legal counsel before they waive their constitutional rights in a situation of custodial interrogation by the police. The bill also provides guidance for courts in determining whether a youth’s Miranda waiver was made in a voluntary, knowing, and intelligent manner as required under existing law.

Be a part of passing SB 1052!

Learn more about Prop 57!!!

Sign up to receive more information about Prop 57: The Public Safety and Rehabilitation Act here!

The Public Safety and Rehabilitation Act is an important step towards decreasing California’s prison population and changing a culture of incarceration. It would increase opportunities for rehabilitation for both children and adults. Governor Brown, Human Rights Watch, Californians for Safety and Justice, the Anti-Recidivism Coalition, the Children’s Defense Fund, and many more organizations and individuals are joining forces to support this initiative. You can find the full text of the initiative here. In short, it would do the following:

  • Put in the hands of judges, not prosecutors, the decision of whether children as young as 14 are sent to the adult criminal justice system.
  • Require judges to weigh all circumstances of a youth’s life before denying them the rehabilitation programs of the juvenile justice system and charging them as an adult.
  • Authorize parole consideration for people with nonviolent convictions who complete the full sentence of their offense.
  • Incentivize completion of rehabilitation, treatment, and education programs by people in prison.

Help Change California!

  • Be informed! Keep checking back here for updates and news. Sign up for updates right here (upper right, blue box.) We will soon be announcing important bills California is considering this year!
  • Be active!We are working on making sure the Youth Offender Parole process under SB 260 is going right. We will participate in the regulation-making process for SB 260, and invite you to help with this, too. Watch for alerts on ways you can be involved.California has a chance to dramatically change its justice system. We are working to get The Public Safety and Rehabilitation Act on the November ballot. This measure would affect prison credit and parole practices and also dramatically change whether youth end up in the adult system. It is about making rehabilitation the focus of the criminal and juvenile justice systems.
    Read the Act: The Public Safety and Rehabilitation Act of 2016
    JOIN US! Click here to get occasional updates, learn more, and get involved!
  • Be educated! Join us every first and third Tuesday of the month for a telephone call meeting for family members and friends of youth sentenced to adult prison terms. It’s an hour of sharing and learning, and everyone is welcome to attend! Just call in at 8pm to: (805) 399-1000, and use the code: 817682#
  • Be supported! Join CARES, a group of family and friends of youth. Learn more about CARES or go to www.caresforyouth.org
  • Be cool! Sign up for tweets and get occasional text messages on these important issues. You don’t need a “smart phone.” Just send a text message to the number 40404, and the text: follow fairsentencing It’s free, although your regular text charges will apply.