New York Legislature moves New York ahead of Texas in protecting teens from child marriage. By: Lauae Wolfe

With New York Times taglines like “young teenagers, New York State is calling the wedding off,” New Yorkers are happy to announce law changes that protect children from young teen marriage. Previously allowing marriages of children as young as 14 with court and parent approval, now marriages of children between the ages of 14 and […]

Weekly Roundup

Ending Solitary for Juveniles: A Goal Grows Closer A nationwide shift toward abolishing solitary confinement for juveniles, which began to take shape in 2016 after former President Barack Obama banned the practice in federal prisons, has surged ahead in recent months, with a half-dozen states either prohibiting or strictly limiting its use in their youth […]

Weekly Roundup

Texas’s “Bathroom Bill” Still Very Much Alive In an effort to legalize discrimination against transgender Texans, the Texas Senate has voted once again to advance SB 3, also known as the “Bathroom Bill.” Make no mistake about it: the Republican Party of Texas, despite its rhetoric, prioritizes cheap political parlor tricks over doing what’s in the […]

Juvenile Defense is a Matter of Life & Death

This summer, I have had the extraordinary privilege of interning at the Texas Innocence Network. The Texas Innocence Network is committed to representing current inmates who have viable claims of actual innocence (TIN’s “non-capital” division), as well as inmates on death row who have already been sentenced to death (TIN’s “capital” division). Working in the […]

Weekly Roundup

Schools Rethink Lunch Policies That Humiliate Kids Recently, the United States Agriculture Department has confronted the problem of food shaming in schools where students lack the funds to pay for their lunches. The Agriculture Department has not removed the most jarring examples like hand stamping and swapping out hot food for cold foods, but it […]

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Memphis bids to End Department of Justice Oversight of Juvenile Courts Five years ago, the Justice Department  concluded that juvenile courts failed to give due process to children. Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell told the attorney general that it’s time to end expensive federal oversight of the juvenile courts. Because, he said, they’ve already done […]

Justice, Mercy, and Youthful Indiscretion

      I come from a larger than average extended family – which includes more than twenty cousins. We all grew up either in poverty or close to it. More than half of those cousins have criminal records. Some learned from their mistakes, but some did not. All of them, however, did their time. Many of […]

Fighting for Children’s Lives

Two recent stories in the news offer views on parents’ fights to save the lives of children through medical intervention and technology. One shows the now-hopeless struggle of parents to get their child experimental treatment. The other demonstrates how a mother is providing hope for parents desperately needing care for their newborns. Most people are familiar […]

Weekly Roundup

Wisconsin Federal Court Finds Conditions at Juvenile Facilities Unconstitutional Last week, a Wisconsin Federal Court found the conditions of confinement at two juvenile youth facilities in Wisconsin, Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake Schools, to be unconstitutional. These facilities used punitive solitary confinement, pepper spray, and restraints on incarcerated youth. Western District Judge Peterson found these […]