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JUSTGeorgia

JUSTGeorgia is a statewide juvenile justice coalition of community organizations and individuals advocating for change to Georgia's juvenile code and the underlying social service systems to better serve Georgia's children and promote safer communities. The three lead partners of this statewide initiative are the Barton Center, Georgia Appleseed, and Voices for Georgia's Children. In 2006 the Sapelo Foundation asked these three organizations to work together to improve Georgia's juvenile justice public policies. In response, the lead partners created JUSTGeorgia with two core objectives:

(1) enact a new Juvenile Code that reflects best practices and the latest research and scientific findings;

(2) identify and change policies in the underlying social service systems to better serve Georgia's children, prevent detention, and promote safer communities.

The primary goal of JUSTGeorgia is to create a long term coalition that will advocate, monitor, and report on the conditions, laws, and policies that affect the justice and safety of Georgia's young people.

Within the JUSTGeorgia Coalition, the Barton Center leads the development and implementation of the JUSTGeorgia legislative and advocacy strategy.  With extensive student involvement, the Center analyzes administrative, legislative, judicial, and policy developments related to Georgia’s juvenile justice system and provides legal research, analysis, and advocacy in support of JUSTGeorgia’s mission and agenda.

The Child Protection and Public Safety Act

For the past six years, the JUSTGeorgia Coalition agenda has centered on a comprehensive revision of the state’s juvenile code.  Accordingly, the “Child Protection and Public Safety Act” reflects substantive and organizational reform of Georgia’s response to children and their families in cases of abuse, neglect, violations of law by children, and other circumstances requiring court intervention.

The Act reorganizes the code for ease of understanding and application, modernizes substantive provisions to reflect advances in research and practice, and brings Georgia into full compliance with federal laws applicable to juvenile court proceedings. The Child Protection and Public Safety Act was introduced in 2009 as Senate Bill 292 and a revised version of the Act was introduced in 2011 as Senate Bill 127 and House Bill 641.

The collaborative efforts of the Barton Center, its students, and its partners have facilitated a sophisticated conversation among a broad and diverse professional audience about how best to rehabilitate and protect children who are involved with the state’s juvenile courts.

Publications

Summaries of the Legislation

The Child Protection and Public Safety Act Summary (SB127 and HB 641)
Short Summary of SB 292
Detailed Summary of SB 292

White Papers

Children in Need of Services (CHINS):  A New Framework for Status Offenders
Author: Roshal Erskine
Publisher: Barton Child Law and Policy Center, Emory Law School, 2010

Crossover or Dual Jurisdiction Youth
Authors: Mary Hermann and Karen Worthington
Publisher: Barton Child Law and Policy Center, Emory Law School, 2010

Adding “Emotional Abuse” to the Georgia Juvenile Code
Author: Brad Glick
Publisher: Barton Child Law and Policy Center, Emory Law School, 2008

A Child’s Right to Counsel in Juvenile Court Proceedings
Authors: Melissa Carter and Kirsten Widner
Publisher: Barton Child Law and Policy Center, Emory Law School, 2008

Prosecution in Superior Court or Juvenile Court:  The Proposed Model Code’s Approach
Author: Tom Rawlings
Publisher: Barton Child Law and Policy Center, Emory Law School, 2008

Reinstatement of Parental Rights:  An Important Step Toward Solving the Problem of Legal Orphans
Authors: Melissa Carter and Kirsten Widner
Publisher: Barton Child Law and Policy Center, Emory Law School, 2008

Youth Development and the Juvenile Justice System
Authors: Don Bower, Ph.D., and Rachel Hagues, MSW
Publisher: The  University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, 2008, prepared for the Barton Center

Fact Sheets

The Long-Term Cost Savings of the Child Protection and Public Safety Act
Publisher: JUSTGeorgia, 2011

Child’s Right to Counsel in Deprivation and Delinquency Proceedings
Author: Beth Reimels
Publisher: Barton Child Law and Policy Center, Emory Law School, 2008

Electronic Recordation of Juvenile Interrogations
Author: Nicholas Burton
Publisher: Barton Child Law and Policy Center, Emory Law School, 2008

Child Protection and Public Safety Act: Good for Georgia’s Children and Families
Publisher: JUSTGeorgia, 2007

Georgia’s Juvenile Code: a Case for Revision
Author: Genie Key
Publisher: JUSTGeorgia, 2007

Georgia’s Juvenile Code Revision:  Juvenile Code Revision Efforts in Other States
Authors: Genie Key and Steve Reba
Publisher: JUSTGeorgia, 2007

Georgia’s Juvenile Code Revision: Revisions of Georgia Code Sections by the State Bar
Publisher: JUSTGeorgia, 2007


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