News & Special Events
The JJC and the Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth
On November 15 and November 16, 2012, The Juvenile Justice clinic cosponsored a conference with the Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth on strategies to implement the Supreme Court's decision in Miller v. Alabama; Advocates from around the country spent two days discussing the current state of implementation of the decision, devising new strategies to challenge mandatory life without parole sentences in the states, and brainstorming on ways to use the Court's reasoning concerning the diminished culpability of youth based on neuroscientific evidence in other areas of juvenile justice practice.For more information about Life Without parole sentences please see http://www.endjlwop.org/
45th ANNIVERSARY OF IN RE GAULT
On May 15, 1967, the United States Supreme Court decided the case of In re Gerald Gault. The Gault case held that children were "persons" under the United States Constitution, and as such must be treated fairly when they are deprived of their liberty. Specifically, the Court ruled that children subject to juvenile court proceedings were entitled to notice of the charges against them, had a right to counsel, possessed the privilege against self incrimination, and were entitled to confront and cross examine their accusers. Now 40 years later, we celebrate this landmark decision.
Georgetown's Juvenile Justice Clinic was founded in 1973, a mere six years after the Supreme Court's landmark decision. One of the first law school-based legal clinics specializing in children's issues, the Georgetown Juvenile Justice Clinic and its staff seek to fulfill the mandates of the Gault decision, to expand the legal rights of children, and to insure that children are protected from maltreatment by their parents or the government.
Today, many children receive excellent legal representation, but many do not. Despite the unequivocal mandate of Gault, many ethical and practical challenges still confront children accused of crimes and their defense lawyers. Juvenile and family courts are often deprived of important information related to whether a youth is actually guilty of a crime. Indeed, in some states, the right to counsel is honored more in the breech than in reality, thus ensuring the conviction of innocent children. As we celebrate the anniversary of this landmark case, judges, lawyers, legislators, and the public need to renew the promise of In re Gault and ensure that 40 more years do not pass before its complete implementation.
- Colloquium on U.N. Convention on Rights of the Child (6/1/09 & 6/2/09)
- Symposium on the Intersection of Poverty and Delinquency (3/26/09)
- A Call to Action for Juvenile Justice, a Town Hall Meeting (11/6/08)
- Youth Transferred to Adult Court: "The Effect on Public Safety, Recidivism, and Rehabilitation" Conference (7/21/08)
- Commemorative event for In re Gault (4/14/08)
- U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child (11/16/07)
- After Roper v. Simmons (1/24/06)
- "Keeping Children in the Community" Conference (7/13/10)