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Reflections from the 2022 KY Commission on Race & Access to Opportunity

Read about the November 2021 meeting of the Commission on Race and Opportunity here.  Following the 2021 General Assembly, SB 10, co-sponsored by Senator Givens, Senator Whitney Westerfield, and Senate President Robert Stivers, became law and established the Commission on Race and Access to Opportunity. The group is tasked with studying and researching issues where disparities may exist across various sectors to determine areas of improvement and to provide services and opportunities for communities of [...]

Young Kids Are Learning to Regulate Their Emotions — They Should Not Be in the Juvenile Justice System

Children as young as six-years-old have been arrested in the U.S., which remains one of the only countries without a nationally mandated standard for juvenile prosecution. As of May 2022, just under half of states in the U.S. still have no minimum age for prosecuting children.  Six-year-olds are still learning how to regulate their emotions. Throwing a tantrum should not lead to the arrest of a child but should instead be a segue to introducing [...]

By |2022-06-17T00:19:10-04:00June 13th, 2022|Blog, Race Equity, Youth Justice|

Next Steps in Justice Legislation in Kentucky

During the 2022 General Assembly, several bills that were on the Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children policy priority agenda made it to the Governor’s desk, as well as a number of innovative bills that prioritize support for children and families. For example, Senator Whitney Westerfield’s SB 90 establishes a pilot program to create behavioral health treatment alternatives to incarceration and will allow criminal charges to be dismissed upon successful completion of the program. As we celebrate [...]

By |2022-04-28T09:58:33-04:00April 28th, 2022|Blog, Bloom Kentucky, Justice, Race Equity, Youth Justice|

OP-ED: Lots of Questions for the 2022 KY General Assembly

This post originally appeared as an op-ed in the Courier Journal on April 21, 2022. By Dr. Terry Brooks In a press conference before the historic launch of Apollo 11 to the moon, Neil Armstrong was asked about the answers he hoped to discover with his moonwalk. He responded by asserting that he will likely have more questions to ask than answers. That is how I feel as we leave the 2022 Kentucky General Assembly – I have a whole bunch of [...]

Wins & Missed Opportunities for Kids in the 2022 General Assembly

The final gavel has fallen for the 2022 Kentucky General Assembly! This year, the Governor and the Kentucky General Assembly were tasked with crafting a two-year state budget, tackle redistricting, advance policies to address the COVID-19 pandemic, tax reform, and other policy priorities that would be good for the communities they represent and the Commonwealth. If we take a second to reflect, that’s a heavy lift in a long 60-day session. There was good news [...]

Update on Priorities for Kids in the Final Days of KYGA22

The 2022 Kentucky General Assembly has wrapped up Day 58 of the 60-day legislative session and there are many key Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children wins to already celebrate. These priority bills have passed the Kentucky House and Senate and have been delivered to the Governor: Senate Bill 8 to strengthen points of the child welfare system, from child maltreatment prevention to investigation to healing and out-of-home care – signed by the Governor! Senate Bill 97 [...]

Statement on Passage of HB 318 by the Senate Health & Welfare Committee

Contact: Mara Powell Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director, Kentucky Youth Advocates LOUISVILLE, KY – The wrong-headed proposal by Representative Kevin Bratcher and advanced by the Kentucky House unfortunately received passage by the Senate Health and Welfare Committee today. The rhetoric around House Bill 318 is that it will address “rising rates of violent juvenile offenders.” Yet, that rationale is based on politics and not reality. It not only sends hollow, fearmongering echoes to constituents, [...]

By |2022-03-28T17:34:13-04:00March 28th, 2022|News Room, Youth Justice|

Statement on Passage of SB 102 by House Education & Additional School Safety Efforts

Contact: Mara Powell Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director, Kentucky Youth Advocates LOUISVILLE, KY – Today, we are celebrating the unanimous passage of Senate Bill 102 by the House Education Committee to help ensure there is an adequate number of mental health providers in schools to serve students in need of supports. We thank Senator Max Wise for championing this measure and the Committee for ensuring its passage today. During this time of heightened [...]

Statement on KY House Passage of HB 318 to Roll Back Successful Juvenile Justice Reforms

Contact: Mara Powell Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director, Kentucky Youth Advocates LOUISVILLE, KY – The Kentucky House has built a solid legacy of supporting kids. Whether it is around child welfare reform, K-12 accountability, budget investments, or trauma-informed care, the House is always there for our children. That is why its passage of House Bill 318 is so confusing and so disappointing. Kentucky Youth Advocates fully supports the need to ensure public safety and [...]

By |2022-03-14T16:23:42-04:00March 14th, 2022|News Room, Race Equity, Youth Justice|

Statement on Passage of House Bill 318 by House Judiciary Committee

Contact: Mara Powell Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director, Kentucky Youth Advocates LOUISVILLE, KY – An effective system of juvenile justice seeks two primary goals: public safety and rehabilitating youth who have broken the law, which is fundamental to public safety. A recent independent evaluation of changes to diversion practices in Kentucky found that policies resulting from Senate Bill 200 of 2014 has kept kids out of the system, and crucially, they did not return [...]

By |2022-03-09T15:24:43-05:00March 9th, 2022|News Room, Race Equity, Youth Justice|
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