House Judiciary Committee Passes Pivotal Juvenile Justice Legislation

December 2, 2009 12:05 pm

Media Contact
125 Broad Street
18th Floor
New York, NY 10004
United States

Youth PROMISE Act Now Heads To House Floor

CONTACT: (202) 675-2312 of

WASHINGTON – A bipartisan bill to combat youth violence was passed by the House Judiciary Committee today. The bill, H.R. 1064, would fund prevention and intervention programs that are comprehensive, community-centered and evidence-based efforts to combat gangs and youth violence. The Youth Prison, Reduction through Opportunities, Mentoring, Intervention, Support and Education Act, known as “Youth PROMISE,” is sponsored by Representative Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA) and currently has over 230 cosponsors. The bill will now head to the floor for a final House vote.

The following can be attributed to Jennifer Bellamy, American Civil Liberties Union Legislative Counsel:

“The Youth PROMISE Act ensures that our children are not simply funneled into juvenile and adult criminal justice systems by creating prevention strategies for dealing with the complex problem of youth crime. Continuing to lock up our at-risk youth is not only socially and financially damaging to America, but it also compounds our country’s existing problem of over-incarceration.

“This bill addresses the underlying root causes of youth violence and gang activity and offers real solutions to real problems facing many American families. By focusing on prevention and intervention, the Youth PROMISE Act recognizes the importance of keeping young Americans out of the criminal justice system and in school in order to lead productive, fulfilling lives. We urge the House to pass the Youth PROMISE Act as quickly as possible.”

To read the ACLU’s letter of support for the Youth PROMISE Act, go to:

By completing this form, I agree to receive occasional emails per the terms of the ACLU’s privacy policy.

The Latest in Smart Justice

ACLU's Vision

The American Civil Liberties Union is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States of America.

Learn More About Smart Justice

Smart Justice issue image

The ACLU Campaign for Smart Justice is an unprecedented, multiyear effort to reduce the U.S. jail and prison population by 50% and to challenge racism in the criminal legal system.