NOTE: This video was done with the assistance of last year’s NJJA Conference keynote speaker, Starcia Ague.
“MEANWHILE: The Lasting Impact of Juvenile Records in Washington State” Educational Video and Bulletin Released
In late March, the Washington State Partnership Council for Juvenile Justice Youth Committee (the state SAG) and Fab-5 released a video that illustrates how mistakes youth make can cost them time in the juvenile justice system and create lasting barriers to educational and employment opportunities.
The video, “MEANWHILE: The Lasting Impact of Juvenile Records in Washington State,” is available in two different versions, a short 5 minute overview and a full length 30 minute video. The links to the videos and the Bulletin are below:
Starcia Ague, 2012 Champion for Change, SAG youth member and Program Coordinator for the University of Washington’s Division of Public Behavioral Health and Justice Policy, was instrumental in producing the video. She is also working to pass a law to restrict access to juvenile arrest records in Washington State. Starcia and the SAG have been raising public awareness and educating legislators. Currently, Washington is one of only eight states that publish juvenile offense records and one of only three states that then sells those records for a profit. These practices prevent youth from securing housing, employment, and/or higher education.
In early March, the Washington House of Representatives unanimously passed a proposal that would effectively seal most juvenile records from public view, an effort that Starcia and others have been advocating since 2008. Starcia believes that it is important to put a human face on the tragedy created by an excessively punitive juvenile justice system. “MEANWHILE provides viewers with a glimpse of reality. It portrays the daily struggle of youth and the paradox that is our juvenile justice system.”
Starcia also believes in second chances. “In our great country, a country founded on the belief that people can start over and get a second chance to better themselves, why won’t we give our children a second chance?”
The goal of MEANWHILE is to remind people that the mistakes we make as children should not ruin the rest of our lives. To learn more, please contact Starcia Ague at firstname.lastname@example.org.