We are highlighting this organization because it engages in a “community justice”-oriented approach to political change.
The Youth Justice Coalition is working to build a youth, family, and formerly and currently incarcerated people’s movement to challenge America’s addiction to incarceration and race, gender and class discrimination in Los Angeles County’s, California’s and the nation’s juvenile and criminal injustice systems.
Example of their community justice framework:
The YJC has made a commitment to promoting and supporting the leadership of youth, families, and people in prison by promoting a voice, vision and action plan for community justice that is developed, led and staffed at all levels by people who have experienced the injustice system first-hand.
Types of projects and programs:
- Direct action organizing campaigns: ending the war on drugs, improving confinement conditions, decreasing L.A.’s use of incarceration and detention
- Legislative change: addressing police transparency, gang injunctions, ending solitary confinement for youth, etc.
- Education: FREE L.A. High School (Fight for the Revolution that Will Educate and Empower Los Angeles) for youth ages 16 to 24 who have been suspended or expelled from schools or districts, youth returning home from lock-ups, and a more respectful and smaller program for youth who have left traditional schools discouraged.
- Resource fair with Welcome Home L.A.
- Shared space: YJC created Chuco’s Justice Center as a community space for office space, rallies, workshops, FREE L.A. High site, youth programming etc
- Workshops on how to move towards transformative justice and towards decriminalizing youth in schools
- Know Your Rights workshops
- Coalition building