Tuesday’s Children and the Law News Roundup

Here’s a look at today’s top stories affecting children’s rights, juvenile justice, and education:

Visa offers path for immigrant youth in state care, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Maria Boudet has no memory of Mexico or how she came to the United States. What she does remember is the year she turned 16 and found out she was living in the country illegally.

Two years ago, her mother was deported, her brother was detained and she was put in foster care. A powerful reminder of all she lost and gained is printed on the top right corner of her green card: “SL6.” That’s the code for special immigrant juvenile status (SIJS), the little-known program that allows Boudet and hundreds like her each year to live and work in the U.S. as a legal permanent resident.

York County’s “juvenile lifers” all expecting court hearings, York Daily Record

Attorneys representing the 11 men from York County serving life without parole sentences for murders committed as juveniles all filed a motion or petition in county court by Friday just to make sure they did not miss a deadline.

Whether there was a deadline remains something of a question.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on June 25 that mandatory life sentences for juvenile killers is unconstitutional.

Pennsylvania law mandates that a convicted person has 60 days from the time a new law is “enacted” to file for relief.

The question defense attorneys had was: When did or does the clock start ticking? Was it the day of the Supreme Court ruling or in the future when the state legislature enacts new law governing the sentencing of juvenile murders?

A Look at Girls in the Juvenile Justice System, Juvenile Justice Information Exchange (JJIE)

A report released this month takes an in-depth look at how girls are represented in North Carolina’s juvenile justice system, how the numbers have shifted over the years and why females are the fastest growing segment of the juvenile justice system despite the overall decrease in juvenile crime. Representing Girls In the Juvenile Justice System, released by the North Carolina Office of the Juvenile Defender, looks at not only the characteristics and risk factors of girls in the juvenile justice system, but also offers several best practices to best serve the unique issues this population faces.

Q&A with Shay Bilchik, Former Head of the Federal Office on Juvenile Justice, Juvenile Justice Information Exchange (JJIE)

Alex Hunt

About Alex Hunt

Alex Hunt is a former Yale & Irene Rosenberg Graduate Fellow at the Center for Children, Law & Policy. Alex graduated from the University of Texas in 2008 with a Bachelor of Arts in government. Before entering law school, he taught middle school math at YES Prep Southwest in Houston with Teach For America. In 2010, he received New Leaders' EPIC Spotlight Teacher Award, a national award for teachers with outstanding student growth. Alex graduated cum laude from the University of Houston Law Center in May 2013. During law school, Alex was Casenotes & Comments Editor for the Houston Journal of International Law, interned for both state and federal judges, and served as Vice President of the Health Law Organization (HLO). In addition, Alex has received the Irving J. Weiner Memorial Scholarship Award (for a year of outstanding work in the UH Law Center Legal Clinic), the Napoleon Beazley Defender Award (for outstanding work on behalf of children), the Ann Dinsmore Forman Memorial Child Advocacy Award, the Mont P. Hoyt Memorial Writing Award for an Outstanding Comment on a Topic in International Law, and he was a finalist for Texas Access to Justice's Law Student Pro Bono Award. Alex is currently in private family law practice with the Hunt Law Firm, P.L.L.C. in Katy, Texas.

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