Brought a Section 1983 civil rights damage action on behalf of a foster youth who had been in foster care for three and a half years without any judicial review and without the provision of services to help him return home to his family by the county child welfare agency.
Challenged the adequacy of Philadelphia’s program of aftercare probation, which was responsible for a child’s course of treatment in, discharge from, and supervision following detention for juvenile offenses.
Surveyed statutes and social science literature in a lawsuit involving the interpretation of the “reasonable efforts” to preserve and reunite families provision of the Adoption and Assistance Child Welfare Act.
Challenged the zero-tolerance approach in the delinquency adjudication of an eighth-grade student whose creative writing assignment invoked an unhappy student who cut off his teacher’s head when she told him to shut up.
Briefed the issues of constitutionality and racial disparity in the application of a statute allowing prosecutors discretion to file charges against minors directly in criminal court without a prior adjudication of a minor’s lack of fitness for juvenile disposition.
Juvenile Law Center was co-counsel in Montgomery v. Louisiana, a case recently decided by the U.S. Supreme Court holding that Miller v. Alabama (2012) applies retroactively to individuals serving mandatory juvenile life without parole sentences.
These briefs involved a thirteen-year-old student who was questioned by four adults, including a uniformed police officer, on school grounds regarding a series of break-ins. Juvenile Law Center argued that the student should have been considered in custody for Miranda purposes.
Supreme Court held the execution of juveniles unconstitutional. Juvenile Law Center’s brief argued the developmental differences between adolescents and adults in critical areas, including impulse control and understanding consequences.
One of the most important lessons from our 40 years of experience is that children involved with the justice and foster care systems need zealous legal advocates. Your support for our work is more important now than ever before.