June 2019
Bridging justice between childhood and adulthood
Massachusetts Prosecutors Urge Policymakers to Raise the Age of the Juvenile Justice System to 21
On June 27, 2019, three Massachusetts District Attorneys - Andrea Harrington (Berkshire County), Rachael Rollins (Suffolk County) and David Sullivan (Franklin/Hampshire County) - joined Fair and Just Prosecution Executive Director Miriam Krinsky to call for policymakers on the Massachusetts Task Force on Emerging Adults in the Criminal Justice System to create a safer, fairer, and more developmentally appropriate justice system by raising the age of juvenile jurisdiction from 18 to 21. If the recommendation is taken up, Massachusetts will be the first state in the United States to raise its age of juvenile jurisdiction to 21; Vermont recently became the first state to raise its age to 20. Read Fair and Just Prosecution's press release here .
E merging Adults & Justice Reform Summit 2019
On June 11-12, we held our Emerging Adults & Justice Reform Summit, bringing together a diverse range of justice leaders and stakeholders from around the country to address reforms of the justice system’s interaction with emerging adults. For highlights of the Summit, read our writeup here .
Op-ed by Rachael Roll ins a nd Miriam Krinsky: Germany’s better path on emerging-adult offenders
On June 12, 2019, The Boston Globe published an article by Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins and Fair and Just Prosecution Executive Director Miriam Krinksy about their recent trip to Germany to observe responses to system-involved emerging adults. The authors look to the German justice model as a basis for their recommendations for reform in the U.S., and highlight the need to confront entrenched structural racism. Read The Boston Globe article here .
WBUR News on our Summit's European delegation touring a Massachusetts Department of Youth Services facility
F our European delegates from our summit - Judge Lana Peto Kujundžić of Zagreb, Croatia, Judge Andrea Ritter from Rostock, Germany, Chief Prosecutor Andrés Ritter from Rostock, Germany, and Jörg Jesse,  Director General of the Prison and Probation Administration in the Ministry of Justice Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Germany -  visited a Massachusetts Department of Youth Services facility. They noted the differences in European and U.S. attitudes towards system-involved emerging adults, with European facilities gearing toward rehabilitation while U.S. facilities focus on punishment. The European delegation was struck by the disparity between Massachusetts' statewide demographics and the racial makeup of the facility. Listen to the WBUR podcast or read the transcript here .
Reform & Rehabilitation in Washington, D.C.: YRA & YME
The summit showcased emerging reforms and practices in Washington, D.C., from the expansion of the Youth Rehabilitation Act (YRA) to the creation of the Young Men Emerging (YME) specialized correctional unit for emerging adults. Justice Policy Institute Director Marc Schindler lays out the events leading to the YRA reform and touches on the rehabilitative aspects of the YME unit in an op-ed for The Washington Post . Check out Marc Schindler's op-ed here .

Current YME mentors, Joel Castón and Michael Woody, who led a panel via video conference at our recent summit, wrote an article on the YME’s values, its programs, and their hope that the YME model can be replicated in other prisons across the country. Read their piece here .

Also read this op-ed by Tyrone Walker, a former YME mentor and current Justice Policy intern, on his experience in the YME unit and his belief in the importance of mentorship.
Video collaboration with Echoes of Incarceration
Watch our video collaboration with Echoes of Incarceration, a documentary initiative produced by emerging adults directly impacted by incarceration. The three-part series explores the science behind and the policy responses to emerging adults as a distinct developmental category. Watch the series here !
Emerging Adult Justice Forum 2019
held with Illinois' Juvenile Justice Initiative
On June 5, 2019, the Juvenile Justice Initiative held the Emerging Adult Justice Forum in Chicago, in conjunction with the Columbia Justice Lab. We heard from Illinois stakeholders who travelled to Germany to view justice models for emerging adults and from other international counterparts on their systems' focus on human dignity and rehabilitation. Read this news article that includes interviews with Illinois Senator Laura Fine and the Justice Lab's Vincent Schiraldi as they discuss following European justice systems and raising Illinois' age of juvenile jurisdiction.
Illinois Young Adult Parole: " Gov. J.B. Pritzker signs law creating parole review for young offenders with lengthy sentences"
On April 1, 2019, Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a measure that allows emerging adults and youth who were sentenced to lengthy prison terms for crimes committed before age 21 to be eligible for parole review after serving 10 years for most crimes and 20 years for first-degree murder and aggravated criminal sexual assault. The law went into effect on June 1, 2019, and is part of Governer Pritzker's initiative to pursue justice reforms that prioritize rehabilitation over incarceration. Read about Illinois' new young adult parole provision here .