#RaiseTheAgeNY Statement: In response to the New York State one-house budget resolutions released
In response to the New York State one-house budget resolutions released, the Raise the Age NY Campaign issued the following statement:
We thank the Assembly for their continued commitment to passing comprehensive raise the age legislation and for making it a priority in their one-house budget resolution. We are encouraged to see the Senate include raising the age of criminal responsibility, and hope the Senate makes the necessary changes in their final budget to reflect comprehensive reform,“We thank the Assembly for their continued commitment to passing comprehensive raise the age legislation and for making it a priority in their one-house budget resolution. We are encouraged to see the Senate include raising the age of criminal responsibility, and hope the Senate makes the necessary changes in their final budget to reflect comprehensive reform,” said Jennifer March, Executive Director of Citizens’ Committee for Children; Naomi Post, Executive Director of the Children’s Defense Fund-New York and Paige Pierce, CEO of Families Together in New York State.
About the Raise the Age NY campaign:
Raise the Age NY is a public awareness campaign that includes national and local advocates, youth, parents, law enforcement and legal representative groups, faith leaders, and unions that have come together to increase public awareness of the need to implement a comprehensive approach to raise the age of criminal responsibility in New York State so that the legal process responds to all children as children and provides services and placement options that better meet the rehabilitative needs of all children and youth.
New York is one of only two states in the country (the other is North Carolina) that have failed to recognize what research and science have confirmed – adolescents are children, and prosecuting and placing them in the adult criminal justice system doesn’t work for them and doesn’t work for public safety.
Children who are prosecuted as adults are more likely to continue committing crimes in the future. Children who are treated as children are more likely to stay out of jail, and out of the justice system:
- Studies have found that young people prosecuted in the adult criminal justice system are 34% more likely to be re-arrested for violent or other crime than youth retained in the youth justice system.
- A study comparing youth prosecuted in New York’s adult courts to young people prosecuted for the same felonies in New Jersey’s juvenile courts found that the New York youth were more likely to recidivate. Not only were New York youth 100% more likely to rearrested for a violent crime, they also had higher re-incarceration rates and shorter time periods to re-arrest than their New Jersey peers.
- In 2013, the Illinois Juvenile Justice Commission found that when the state began prosecuting 17-year-olds as juveniles, juvenile crime continued to decline. Moreover, between 2010 when the law changed, until 2013, the state experienced a 14% decrease in violent crime. Contrary to what opponents had predicted, including 17-year-olds did not overload the juvenile justice system, nor did it increase juvenile offenses.
Research into brain development underscores that adolescents are in fact children and that the human brain is not fully formed until the age of 25:
- As the cognitive skills of adolescents are developing, adolescents’ behavior is often impulsive and they lack the ability to focus on the consequences of their behavior.
- Because the adolescent brain is still developing, the character, personality traits and behavior of adolescents are highly receptive to change; adolescents respond well to interventions, learn to make responsible choices, and are likely to grow out of negative or delinquent behavior.
- Raise the Age NY is a campaign that supports raising the age of criminal responsibility for all children in New York to improve outcomes for children and public safety.
For more information about the Raise the Age campaign, visit www.raisetheageny.com.Lead group members: Center for Community Alternatives | @CCA_NY Citizens’ Committee for Children of New York | @CCCNewYork Correctional Association of New York | @CANY_1844 Families Together in NYS | @ftnys Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies | @FPWA NAACP | @NAACP Schuyler Center for Analysis and Advocacy | @SchuylerCenter The Children’s Agenda | @ChildrensAgenda The Children’s Defense Fund – New York | @CDFNewYork The Fund for Modern Courts | @ModernCourts Westchester Children’s Association | @wca4kids Youth Represent | @YouthRepresent With support from: SparkAction | @sparkaction Additional supporters to date: 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East 32BJ SEIU Alternatives for Battered Women American Friends Service Committee (NY) Amnesty International Arab American Association of NY Association for Community Living, Inc. Association of NYS Youth Bureaus Association to Benefit Children Bend the Arc: A Jewish Partnership for Justice Bronx Christian Fellowship Church Bronx Clergy Roundtable Brooklyn Community Services Brooklyn Defender Services Campaign to End the New Jim Crow Casa Rochester/Monroe County, Inc. Center for Children’s Initiatives Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO) Center for Popular Democracy Child Welfare Organizing Project Children’s Village Citizens Action of New York City of Glen Cove Youth Bureau Coalition for Asian American Children and Families Coalition for Education Justice Coalition for Hispanic Children and Families Coalition for the Homeless Coalition of Black Trade Unionists Commission on the Public’s Health System Communities United for Police Reform Community Connections for Youth Community Service Society Community Voices for Youth and Families Crossway Church Dignity in Schools Campaign – New York Equal Justice Initiative Every Child Matters LI Faith in New York Families On The Move of NYC, Inc. First Corinthian Baptist Church Forestdale Inc. Good Shepherd Services Graham Windham Harlem Children’s Zone Harry Belafonte Herstory Writers Workshop Human Rights Watch Human Services Council Incarcerated Nation Corp. Jewish Child Care Association Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club Latino Justice PRLDEF Lawyers for Children Leake &Watts Services, Inc. Legal Action Center Lenox Hill Neighborhood House Long Island Progressive Coalition Lutheran Family Health Centers Make the Road New York
Mental Health Association in New York State, Inc. MFY Legal Services, Inc. MomsRising Montefiore School Health Program National Association of Social Workers – New York State National Economic and Social Rights Initiative NASW-NYC Neighborhood Family Services Coalition New York American Academy of Pediatrics, District II New York Association of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Providers, Inc. New York Center for Juvenile Justice New York Civil Liberties Union New York Lawyers for the Public Interest New York Immigration Coalition New York Society for Ethical Culture New York State Coalition Against Sexual Assault New York State Coalition for Children’s Mental Health New York State Coalition for School-Based Health Centers New York State Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare New York Theological Seminary NYC Jails Action Coalition Partnership for After School Education (PASE) Partnership for the Public Good Partners in Restorative Initiatives Pumphouse Projects Save the Kids SCO Family of Services SparkAction Staten Island Council on Child Abuse and Neglect S.T.R.O.N.G. Youth Inc. Teachers Unite The Black Institute The Brotherhood/Sister Sol The Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES) The Children’s Aid Society The Coalition of Behavioral Health Agencies, Inc. The Door The Fortune Society The Gathering for Justice/ Justice League NYC The Legal Aid Society The National Alliance for Mental Illness-New York State The New York Foundling The New York Immigration Coalition The New York State Dispute Resolution Association The Osborne Association The Partnership For Public Good The Resolution Plan Tremont United Methodist Church United Neighborhood Houses Unique People Services Uniting Disabled Individuals, Inc Urban Health Plan, Inc. Urban Justice Center Urban Youth Collaborative VOCAL-NY Women’s City Club of New York Pastor Mike Walrond William F. Ryan Community Health Network YA-YA Network (Youth Activists-Youth Allies) YOUTH POWER!