CfJJ was founded in 1994 by a diverse group of juvenile justice professionals who opposed regressive legislation that threatened the key principles of the juvenile justice system: children should be treated differently than adults and their treatment should focus on rehabilitation.
Since then, CfJJ has addressed a number of systemic juvenile justice issues and has established itself as the voice for a fair, effective, and developmentally appropriate system.
CfJJ’s work has included: surveying public opinion about the juvenile justice system; leading successful efforts to block the proposed transfer of the Department of Youth Services from the Executive Office of Health and Human Services to the Executive Office of Public Safety; helping to persuade Governor Mitt Romney to overhaul the state Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee; focusing attention on the special needs of girls and youth with mental health problems in the juvenile justice system; advocating for reducing the unnecessary use of pre-trial detention; and raising the age of juvenile court jurisdiction to include 17-year-olds.
Underlying all our work has been the belief that the juvenile justice system should be as transparent as possible while protecting the privacy of individual juveniles. Accordingly, we have energetically and consistently pressed for the collection and publication of comprehensive, aggregate data by agencies involved in juvenile justice.