We invest in young people as leaders within their communities and beyond and support them to reach their self-defined goals.
The Center for Court Innovation works with youth to create paths to economic mobility, build community safety, and address the inequities and racist policies in the criminal legal system that have disproportionately harmed and criminalized BIPOC youth.
Transformative relationships among staff, young people, and the community are the foundation of the Center’s model. We invest in young people as leaders within their communities and beyond and support them to reach their self-defined goals.
Youth can be transformative leaders, addressing inequity in their communities and the factors that lead to youth involvement in the criminal legal system.
We provide affirming space for young people to explore their identities, build community, pursue self-care, and access healing spaces with an intersectional lens.
Youth Entrepreneurship and Social Enterprise
Social enterprise and entrepreneurship programs nurture young people’s skills to develop career pipelines and start businesses, solve local problems, and support economic development.
Youth-led placemaking forges strong connections between individuals and their environments to create public spaces that foster community well-being.
Art engages young people to build creativity, skills, and create networking opportunities to support educational and career trajectories.
Youth Justice Board
The Youth Justice Board is an after-school leadership development program that helps New York City teenagers study a public policy issue affecting young people.
Restorative justice is about repairing harm. But for Black Americans, what is there to be restored to? This special episode of New Thinking features a roundtable with eight members of our Restorative Justice in Schools team. They spent three years embedded in five Brooklyn high schools—all five schools are overwhelmingly Black, and all five had some of the highest suspension rates in New York City.
The Youth Justice Board, teenagers from across New York City who investigate a current justice system or public safety issue, looked into social media and how police and schools use it for surveillance. Researching the actions and policies of the justice and school systems in New York City, the Board outline the serious consequences surveillance has on young people, identify opportunities to protect, educate, and support youth, and provide specific policy recommendations to address these concerns.
With funding from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention of the U.S. Department of Justice, the Center for Court Innovation conducted a multi-site study designed to increase scientific knowledge concerning youth involvement in the sex trade. Nearly 1,000 youth, ages 13-24, were interviewed across six sites on subjects including entry into the sex trade, earning a living, finding customers, involvement of pimps and market facilitators, health issues and service needs, interactions with law enforcement, and outlook for the future.
As program associate of the Youth Justice Board, Jennelle Ramdeen helps young people acquire skills to research and make recommendations about public policy issues that affect their lives. She teaches participants “how to think critically, make connections, [and] have the tools to analyze and be responsible researchers."