Stoneleigh’s Senior Program Officer, Marie Williams, authored a blog summarizing last month’s panel discussion on “Transforming Juvenile Justice to Improve Youth Outcomes in Philadelphia.” The panel took place during PolicyLab’s 10th Anniversary Forum, “Charter New Frontiers in Children’s Health Policy and Practice.”
Think back to your teenage years. If you’re like most people, it was probably a period of rapid change—not only physically, but also cognitively and emotionally. From a developmental perspective, teens and young adults are more likely to be impulsive and susceptible to negative peer influences, and they’re less apt to weigh the long-term consequences of their actions.
Because youth are developmentally different from adults, the juvenile justice system was historically designed to be rehabilitative and restorative, rather than retributive. Despite this stated goal, over the last several decades, children have been subjected to many of the same harsh, punitive policies imposed in the adult criminal justice system.
Last month, at PolicyLab’s “Charting New Frontiers in Children’s Health Policy and Practice” forum, the Stoneleigh Foundation hosted a panel session on “Transforming Juvenile Justice to Improve Youth Outcomes in Philadelphia.” With so many children’s health researchers, practitioners and policymakers in attendance, we thought it important to call attention to the parallels between the juvenile justice and health services systems.