A Tale of Two Systems: An Assessment of Access to & Quality of Youth Defense Counsel in Utah

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The Utah assessment is the 29th statewide assessment of youth defense delivery systems the Gault Center has conducted. These assessments gather information and data about the structure and funding of defense systems and examine whether youth receive counsel at all critical stages, the timing of appointments, waiver of counsel, youth defense resource allocation, supervision and…

Limited Justice: An Assessment of Access to and Quality of Juvenile Defense Counsel in Kansas (2020)

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This assessment of access to counsel and quality of representation for Kansas youth is part of a nationwide effort to systematically review and provide information about the provision of defense counsel in delinquency proceedings. The purpose of a state assessment is to provide policymakers, legislators, defense leadership, and other stakeholders with a thorough understanding of…

Advancing Youth Justice: An Assessment of Access to and Quality of Juvenile Defense Counsel in Oregon (2020)

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The purpose of a state assessment is to provide policymakers, legislators, defense leadership, and other stakeholders with a thorough understanding of children’s access to counsel in the state, to identify structural and systemic barriers that impede effective representation of children, to analyze how fee and cost structures inhibit young people’s access to justice, to highlight…

Undervalued: An Assessment of Access to and Quality of Juvenile Defense Counsel in New Hampshire (2020)

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This assessment of access to counsel and quality of representation for New Hampshire’s youth is part of a nationwide effort to systematically review and provide information about the provision of defense counsel in delinquency proceedings. The purpose of a state assessment is to provide policymakers, legislators, defense leadership, and other stakeholders with a thorough understanding…

Overdue for Justice: An Assessment of Access to and Quality of Juvenile Defense Counsel in Michigan (2020)

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This assessment report provides an overview of Michigan’s system of juvenile defense. It examines the extent to which youth in delinquency court are provided with well-qualified and effective counsel at all critical stages and addresses systemic barriers that may impede effective representation and hamper due process and equal protection of the law. It measures structure,…

Arizona Bringing Gault Home: An Assessment of Access to and Quality of Juvenile Defense Counsel (2018)

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District of Columbia: An Assessment of Access to and Quality of Juvenile Defense Counsel (2018)

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The National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC), in partnership with our regional juvenile defender centers and other key stakeholders, has embarked on a nationwide strategy to assess access to and quality of juvenile defense afforded to youth in conflict with the law. Because juvenile justice systems are a state and local responsibility, rather than a federal…

Delaware: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Juvenile Delinquency Proceedings (2017)

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NJDC’s expert investigators visited Delaware’s three counties, where they conducted interviews with ODS staff and other juvenile court stakeholders, observed delinquency proceedings, and obtained information and reports from the Delaware Family Courts. Investigators also completed a statutory review of the state’s court rules, laws, and proposed legislation. It was readily apparent that those responsible for…

Missouri-Justice Rationed: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Juvenile Defense Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2013)

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While Missouri stands out for its innovation in providing small, regionalized juvenile corrections programs, an effective juvenile justice system is not built solely upon the corrections options available to youth after they have navigated their way through a complex legal process. An effective juvenile justice system must encompass the foundational elements of fundamental fairness and…

Colorado: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Juvenile Delinquency Proceedings (2012)

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Coloradans have an abiding interest in ensuring that the justice system is not the dumping ground for failing schools, mental health systems, or parents who want the state to control their children. The justice system should be reserved for those youth who must be there. When youth do have the misfortune of coming into contact…

West Virginia: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Juvenile Delinquency Court (2010)

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In West Virginia, full-time public defenders work for the Public Defender Corporation, established by W.Va. Code 29-21-1, et seq. By statute, all indigent defense work is to be assigned to public defender offices except for conflicts and case overloads. However, public defender offices exist in only 23 of 55 counties (18 of 31 Judicial Circuits)…

South Carolina: Juvenile Indigent Defense: A Report on Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2010)

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Children have a clearly established constitutional right to the effective assistance of counsel in delinquency cases and juvenile defenders are vital to protect and enforce that right. In addition, skilled juvenile defenders can play an important role in opening doors to positive opportunities and helping children become productive and contributing members of society. As stated…

Juvenile Legal Defense: A Report on Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation for Children in Nebraska (2009)

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Mississippi: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2007)

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The Mississippi assessment of access to counsel and quality of representation in youth court proceedings is part of a national effort to address deficiencies and highlight strengths in juvenile indigent defense practices. Forty years after the United States Supreme Court ruled in In re Gault that children in the delinquency system have a right to…

Illinois: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2007)

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From the inception of the world’s first juvenile court over 100 years ago, the State of Illinois has long led the way in the creation of a fair and equitable juvenile justice system for children. Illinois has historically been a place where new ideas and strategies that impact children and families have been born, tested…

Florida: An Assessment of Access to Counsel & Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2006)

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The information in this report was collected by a team of experts from across the country and Florida, with the guidance of a dedicated advisory board of Florida stakeholders and the support of the Florida Supreme Court, Florida Bar Association, Florida Public Defender’s Association and the elected Public Defenders. Observers traveled to 10 of Florida’s…

Indiana: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2006)

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This assessment of access to counsel and quality of representation for children in Indiana is part of a nationwide effort to address deficiencies and identify strengths in juvenile indigent defense practices. More than thirty-five years after the United States Supreme Court decided in In re Gault that children have a constitutional right to counsel, the…

Pennsylvania: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (October 2003)

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In 1995, a national assessment of the legal representation of children in delinquency proceedings was conducted by the American Bar Association (ABA) Juvenile Justice Center, Youth Law Center (YLC) and Juvenile Law Center (JLC). The findings—that indigent juvenile defense was woefully inadequate—were published in A Call for Justice: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and…

Maryland: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2003)

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This assessment of access to counsel and quality of representation received by children in the State of Maryland is part of a nationwide effort to address deficiencies and identify strengths in juvenile indigent defense practices. More than thirty-five years after the United States Supreme Court decided that children have a constitutional right to counsel, the…

Maine: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2003)

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This study reveals that Maine’s juvenile justice system depends upon the perseverance of dedicated, but under-resourced advocates who rely on luck in locating and providing necessary services for the youth they represent. Maine cannot meet the promise of rehabilitation set forth in its juvenile code, nor can Maine guarantee the highest quality juvenile defense system…

Justice Cut Short: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings in Ohio (2003)

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In 2002, the Central Juvenile Defender Center, through the Children’s Law Center, Inc. in Covington, Kentucky, in conjunction with the ABA National Juvenile Defender Center and the Juvenile Justice Coalition, Inc. embarked upon a statewide study of Ohio’s indigent juvenile defense system. The study included extensive surveying of judges, magistrates and defense attorneys, and detention…

Washington: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Juvenile Offender Matters (2003)

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The primary goal of this study is to evaluate the quality of counsel defending children in Washington’s juvenile courts. Stakeholders from across the state were invited to participate in defining the objectives of WJJAP, including judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, bar association leaders, university professors, social scientists, child welfare providers, civil legal service attorneys and others…

Montana: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2003)

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This assessment of access to counsel and quality of representation received by children in the State of Montana is part of a nationwide effort to address deficiencies and identify strengths in juvenile indigent defense practices. More than thirty-five years after the United States Supreme Court decided that children have a constitutional right to counsel, the…

North Carolina: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2003)

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This assessment of access to counsel and quality of representation that children receive in delinquency proceedings in the State of North Carolina is part of a nationwide effort to address deficiencies and identify strengths in juvenile indigent defense practices. Over thirty-five years after the United States Supreme Court decided that children have a constitutional right…

Virginia: An Assessment of Access to Counsel and Quality of Representation in Delinquency Proceedings (2002)

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This assessment of access to counsel and quality of representation that children receive in delinquency proceedings in the Commonwealth of Virginia is part of a nationwide effort to address deficiencies and identify strengths in juvenile indigent defense practices. Thirty-five years after the United States Supreme Court decided that children have a constitutional right to counsel,…