Monday’s Children and the Law News Roundup

Push Begins to Reform Juvenile Justice System, The Atlanta Journal Constitution

The chief justice of the Georgia Supreme Court called for extensive reform to the juvenile justice system, an exhortation that served as a prelude Thursday to the introduction of sweeping legislation meant to improve the state’s treatment of its youngest offenders.

Chief Justice Carole Hunstein, as well as bill sponsor Rep. Wendell Willard and juvenile justice advocates, said too many of the wrong kids are being locked up in Georgia and the state needs to approach the problem differently. They urged state legislators to make reforms that would divert less dangerous juvenile offenders away from lockups and into community programs, as well as address the minors’ substance abuse issues, problems at home and other challenges faced on the street and at school…

Proposed Assistance Limits Will Harm Children, The Austin American Statesman

When it comes to welfare, Texans are conflicted. On one hand, Texans don’t want to subsidize babies that parents can’t afford. On the other, Texans believe in the sanctity of newborn life and the importance of nurturing children. We find it hard to turn away families struggling to feed, clothe, and shelter their kids.

We understand that children raised in poverty are deprived in ways that damage not only them but our society. We also know that sometimes a parent’s circumstances leave a family in poverty through no fault of the parent and certainly no fault of the kids…

Yemen: Halt Execution of Alleged Juvenile Offender, Human Rights Watch

On March 9, 2013, the government of Yemen executed Mohammad Abd al-karim Mohammad Haza`a for the crime of murder, despite serious concern that he may have been under 18 at the time of his crime.

Human Rights Watch strongly condemns the execution. 

Lisa Steffek

About Lisa Steffek

Lisa Steffek is a third year student at the University of Houston Law Center. Lisa completed her Bachelors, Masters and Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Texas in Human Development and Family Sciences. As an undergraduate, Lisa worked as a research assistant studying child attachment. Lisa also worked for several years at The Settlement Home, a residential treatment center for emotionally disturbed adolescent females. Most of the girls at The Settlement Home had been removed from their homes by Child Protective Services, and Lisa worked with the girls to teach them life-skills and provided psychological treatment to prepare them for adulthood and the transition to foster homes. Lisa also worked for six years in various academic capacities at the University of Texas, including an undergraduate teaching assistant, graduate research assistant, and undergraduate writing consultant. Lisa has presented papers regarding human development at various academic conferences in the states and abroad, and has had her writing published in an international, academic journal.

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