Published by The Davis Vanguard
San Francisco, CA – Following interim District Attorney Brooke Jenkins’ announcement that her office would begin charging some 16 and 17-year-olds as adults, youth and members of the Young Women’s Freedom Center (YWFC) and Reimagine Youth Justice (RYJ) Coalition rallied outside of the D.A.’s office, urging her to refrain from charging any youth as adults. The group was denied entry when they tried to enter the office to speak with the D.A. and deliver a set of demands for age-appropriate community-based preventions and interventions for youth.
“Young people deserve love and support in their communities so they can succeed and thrive”, says Tenaya Jones, a Self-Determination Coordinator with YWFC. “Charging youth as adults is the opposite of what we need!”
D.A. Jenkins’ new policy marks a reversal of her predecessor’s policy of not charging any youth as adults, and runs afoul of the principles and trajectory of California’s youth justice movement. Backed by science and data, California voters and lawmakers have in recent years passed several laws and policies to treat children like children and undo harmful, draconian juvenile justice policies of the past.