What We Need to Thrive: A Youth-Led Vision for a Just Alameda County 

The Ella Baker Center for Human Rights and Ceres Policy Research Center partnered with youth leaders in Alameda County, California, to assess the current landscape of the juvenile legal system and outline a youth-centered vision for the future. Utilizing a youth participatory action research protocol, this report relied on youth leaders to design and implement a study in their communities to hear directly from impacted community members about their experiences with policing and carceral systems. Key perceptions from the community include: there are not enough community programs supporting youth development, creativity, and career building; there needs to be fewer interactions between youth and police; and there needs to be better community alternatives to system involvement for all youth. This report calls on decisionmakers to increase investment in community-based, trauma-informed youth development programs and ensure equitable access to community supports, especially for Black, Latino/a, non-English speaking, and LGBTQ+ youth. The findings and recommendations of this report provide a roadmap for youth-centered reforms focused on community care and healing.

File Type: pdf
Categories: Policy Tool, Research, Resource Library
Tags: Alternatives to Incarceration, Harms of Incarceration, Racial Justice, Structural Racism, System Transformation & Abolition, Youth Defense Research Priorities, Youth Participatory Action Research