History was made today!

For more than 15 years, youth organizers and the Liberty Hill Community have been advocating for youth development, not youth incarceration. For the last three years, we’ve been laser focused on ending youth incarceration as we know it, and building the largest youth development system in the country!

And today it finally happened!

Thanks to the hard work and dedication of local activists and organizers, the L.A. County Board of Supervisors passed a motion that calls for an end to the Probation Department’s supervision of youth, and moves that responsibility to a newly created Department of Youth Development focused on care, not punishment.

This is the latest step in a long journey for Liberty Hill and our partners, many of whom were a part of the Youth Justice Work Group that devised the proposal to reimagine a comprehensive youth development system centered on health and wellness. This landmark transformation will impact the overwhelmingly Black, Brown and Native American youth who are disproportionately represented in Los Angeles County’s criminal legal system.

The Board motion sets into action a proposal to invest $75 million in the new Department of Youth Development in the new fiscal year, funds directly reinvested through winding down the youth side of Probation.

We thank all of the members of the Youth Justice Work Group—Anti-Recidivism CoalitionYouth Justice CoalitionMillion Dollar HoodsCalifornia Defense Fund-CaliforniaL.A. Youth Uprising, and the Brothers, Sons Selves Coalition, for their dedication and commitment to this fight. All of our California Funders for Boys and Men of Color partners through the Our Kids, Our Future Fund made a big difference as well – organizations include Brotherhood CrusadeCommunity CoalitionInnerCity StruggleKhmer Girls in ActionSocial Justice Learning InstituteUrban Peace Institute.

We would also like to thank Supervisors Kuehl and Ridley-Thomas, who co-authored the motion, and the entire Board for their vote for a new vision of youth development in L.A. County.

Check out this recent article on the victory in LAIst.

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