Black Girls Must be Included in D.C.’s Juvenile Justice Reform Efforts
As we work to keep youth out of prisons and ensure they are met with community-based services, we must remember our girls who are increasingly impacted by the juvenile justice system. Across the country, girls’ involvement in the justice system — from arrest to incarceration — has grown due to more aggressive policing of minor offenses, such as running away or missing school.
This carceral response disproportionately impacts girls of color and is made all the more troubling by the fact that the behavior for which girls are penalized is often rooted in their experiences of abuse and marginalization. Unfortunately, this holds true for girls in Washington, D.C., who have not escaped the impact of this alarming juvenile justice trend.