We actually need young people who are bold, willing to challenge conventional thinking, and to break rules, but we also need them to respect others, to rely on logic rather than force, and to appreciate the corrosive effects of violence and exploitation. In short, our communities need powerful and creative young people who want to improve us and not simply to fight us. These should seem like obvious concepts to anyone working around the youth justice system, but it is often surprisingly difficult to implement them in practice.
The insights and lessons of developmental science do not translate easily into the day-to-day tasks of youth justice systems, which often focus on control and compliance. Youth justice practitioners require assistance as they apply developmental principles. The Positive Youth Justice (PYJ) Model was developed to meet this challenge.
Tomberg, Kathleen A. (2013). Youth Development Through Service: A Quality Assessment of the YouthBuild AmeriCorps Program. New York, NY: Research and Evaluation Center, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York. The YouthBuild AmeriCorps program serves youth facing a multitude of challenges, including a lack of education and job skills, community disengagement, and economic disadvantage. [...]
Keynote presentation for the Positive Youth Justice Initiative at the Sierra Health Foundation, Sacramento, California. In 2012, the Sierra Health Foundation launched a new Positive Youth Justice Initiative to improve the outcomes of young people involved in the child welfare and juvenile justice systems, often referred to as crossover youth. Through the Positive Youth Justice Initiative, the Foundation is [...]