Contact: Elizabeth Coplan
University of Washington School of Law



Juvenile Justice Problem and Recommendations Presented to Washington State Supreme Court on March 28, 2012


SEATTLE – On March 28, the Task Force on Race & the Criminal Justice System will address the over representation of minority youth in Washington's Juvenile Justice System -- a problem which has been documented for years with little progress in a presentation to the Washington State Supreme Court. For example, black youth are twice as likely as white youth to be arrested and twice as likely to be referred to juvenile court for charging as white youth.

Four youth of color will discuss their experiences in the juvenile justice system - and offer insights into what is and isn't working and where we might improve the system.

James Bell, Director of the Haywood Burns Institute and a national leader on the fight to end the disproportionate representation of youth of color in the juvenile justice system will deliver a call to action.

Other speakers include Judge Frank Cuthbertson of Pierce County Superior Court and Chair of the DMC Committee of the Partnership Council for Juvenile Justice, Justice (ret.) Bobbe Bridge of the Center for Children and Youth Justice, Dr. Carl McCurley of the Washington State Center for Court Research, Ryan Pinto who is the Office Chief for the Washington Partnership Council for Juvenile Justice, Professor Michael Pullman in the Division of Public Behavioral Health and Justice Policy in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Washington, Professor Kim Ambrose of the University of Washington School of Law, and TJ Bohl and Kevin Williams of the Pierce County Juvenile Court.

This is the second presentation to the Supreme Court by the Task Force on Race & the Criminal Justice System.

The presentation will be held at the Temple of Justice, Washington State Supreme Court in Olympia, Washington on Wednesday, March 28, 2012 from 1:00 to 4:30 p.m. Members of the Task Force will be available after the presentation including Anne Lee of TeamChild and Kim Ambrose of the UW School of Law.

For more information, or to attend, please contact Elizabeth Coplan at or 206.369.9412.


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