This monograph illuminates the connections between juvenile defense policies and the racially disparate impact of the juvenile justice system. The limited data that exist on youth in the juvenile justice system consistently depict disparate contact and outcomes for black youth across the system. The broad rehabilitative goals of the U.S. juvenile justice system, along with the "best interest" legal standard of the child welfare system, muddle the protection of youth due process rights. States differ widely in their policies granting defense counsel, and many policies lack specific language for policies addressing notions such as appointment timing, duration of representation, waiver criteria, and role of counsel.
Using a combination of legal and sociological research methods, this book examines the lack of specificity in the language of juvenile defense policies and connects the dots between this deficiency with the racially disparate impact of the system, contextualizing findings within a broader theoretical constructs of race and law. The author introduces common elements of juvenile defense policies, describes their impact, and makes suggestions for strengthening defense counsel policies. The book concludes with a call to action regarding expanded data-collection practices for juvenile delinquency courts.
This book is essential reading for those engaged in youth and juvenile justice efforts and scholars interested in issues surrounding due process, race, class, social policy, and justice.
Chapter 1: The State and "Race-Neutral" Laws
Chapter 2: The State and the "Race-Neutral" Juvenile Justice System
Chapter 3: Due Process, The State, and Juvenile Justice
Chapter 4: Studying Juvenile Defense
Chapter 5: Guardian of Due Process: Defense Counsel
Chapter 6: Qualifying for Appointment of Defense Counsel
Chapter 7: Waiver of Defense Counsel
Chapter 8: Role Confusion: The Distinct Role of Defense Counsel
Chapter 9: Duration of Appointment of Counsel
Chapter 10: Emerging Trends: Juvenile Defense Policies and Disparate Contact
Chapter 11: Racial Disparity in the Juvenile Justice System and Defense Counsel
Chapter 12: Improving Defense Counsel Policy
Chapter 13: Moving Forward
Juvenile justice matters are of critical concern in both the United States and around the world. Books in the Routledge Studies in Juvenile Justice and Delinquency series explore mechanisms, consequences, insights, and innovations in the field of juvenile justice and its responses to delinquency. Each monograph will examine new areas of empirical and theoretical inquiry, provide an agenda-setting discussion of important concepts and controversies surrounding juvenile justice and delinquency, and seek to encompass a transnational or global approach to the issues addressed. The series will be a resource for the international community of undergraduates, post-graduates, researchers, practitioners, and policymakers concerned with juveniles and families caught up in or at risk of engagement in delinquency and justice system involvement.
Series editor David L. Myers is Professor and Ph.D. Program Director in the Henry C. Lee College of Criminal Justice & Forensic Sciences at the University of New Haven. Proposal inquiries can be sent to him at: DMyers@newhaven.edu