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Justitia Goddess


The Children’s Policy and Law Initiative seeks to eliminate the excessive criminalization of children and achieve a more just, equitable, and age-appropriate public policy approach for children. CPLI engages in public policy advocacy that includes: preventing children’s entry into the juvenile and criminal justice systems, and the inequitable treatment of children of color, including the over-use of exclusionary practices in school and school-based arrests and referrals to juvenile court; reforming laws, policies, and practices that embody punitive approaches or criminalization of children; increasing the use of research-based alternatives and community-based options for children; and ensuring the fair, equitable, just and age-appropriate treatment of court-involved children. 

CPLI works to end the practice of trying kids in adult court. These practices disproportionately impact youth of color.
Nationally, African-American youth represent only 17% of the overall youth population, but they make up 30% of those arrested and a staggering  62% of those prosecuted in the adult criminal system. 
They are also nine times more likely than white youth to receive an adult prison sentence. Hispanic youth are 43% more likely than white youth to be waived to the adult system and 40% more likely to be admitted to the adult prison system.

Children belong in school. We work to end the school-to-prison pipeline.

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Two Friends with a Tablet


For laws, policies and practices that are humane, just, fair, and developmentally appropriate

Waiting Room

Become A Member of Our Legislative Network

Attend Public

Policy Summit

Join the Decriminalization of Youth Workgroup

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