PJDC Makes Post-Disposition Petitions for Release of Children in Congregate Facilities Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic Available for Downloading

Health experts warn that congregate settings place all people at substantial risk of illness and death, and declare that reducing the number of people housed in detention facilities immediately is critically necessary for the health and safety of those facilities and our communities.  Children confined in juvenile halls and camps in California are also at

PJDC’s Transfer Litigation Intensive Forum Has Been Postponed.

The PJDC Governing Board and the Transfer Litigation Intensive Forum Planning Committee have decided to postpone the livestreamed Forum that had been scheduled for Friday, March 20. While last week we were thrilled to find a way to livestream the event, the court closures and issues surfacing about detained youth in response to the COVID-19 …

PJDC Statement on COVID-19 and Youth in the Juvenile Justice System

We, the Pacific Juvenile Defender Center (PJDC), call upon our state, county, and municipal governments to take immediate action against COVID-19 to protect one of California’s most vulnerable group of children—young people in the juvenile delinquency system. PJDC is California’s largest organization of juvenile justice advocates, comprised of over 1,600 juvenile defenders, policy professionals, and …

Registration Now Open For The 2019 Roundtable

Registration is now open for PJDC’s 16th annual Roundtable on Saturday, September 21st at UC Berkeley Law School in Berkeley. This year’s Roundtable will offer case law and legislative updates, as well as workshops in critical areas of juvenile law and policy with a focus on the traumas our clients face both inside and outside …

Desautels and Song Publish Op-Ed on the Closure of Juvenile Halls

PJDC members Meredith Desautels of the Youth Law Center and Ji Seon Song of Stanford Law School recently authored an op-ed in the Chronicle of Social Change calling for counties to creatively reimagine the juvenile justice system, so that they replace juvenile halls with a transformative vision of youth justice centered in the community. The …

SF Board of Supervisors Mandate Pre-Interrogation Attorney Consultations for All Youth

On February 26, 2019, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously passed the “Jeff Adachi Youth Rights” ordinance, which prohibits custodial police interrogations of youth 17 years of age or younger, unless certain conditions are first met. These conditions include: (1) providing the youth legal representation in connection with the interrogation, and (2) requiring that …

​A Great Warrior for Justice: Jeff Adachi 1959-2019 ​

PJDC mourns the loss of Jeff Adachi, Public Defender of San Francisco, who died suddenly ​on​ February 23rd.  PJDC President Patti Lee, who serves as head of the Juvenile Division for the office said of Jeff that “He truly believed in redemption,”  and that he was especially committed to providing the best juvenile defense and …

Los Angeles Supervisors Vote to Phase Out Pepper Spray in Juvenile Facilities

In the wake of a scathing report by the Los Angeles Inspector General regarding the rampant misuse of pepper spray against incarcerated children, PJDC joined dozens of juvenile justice and civil rights organizations to urge the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors to phase out the use of pepper spray in all juvenile facilities.  The …

Elizabeth Calvin Wins Juvenile Law Center Leadership Prize

Big congratulations go to PJDC Board Member Elizabeth Calvin for being selected to receive the Juvenile Law Center’s 2019 Leadership Prize.  The Philadelphia-based Juvenile Law Center awards the Leadership Prize each year to recognize outstanding individuals working in any field—who are fighting for the rights and well-being of youth in the child welfare and justice …