In November, L.A. County voters approved Measure J, an initiative created to address the impacts of racial injustice through community investment in a variety of new programs. The current estimate of funds to be made available through Measure J is estimated to be between $36 and $90 million per year.
This milestone measure to promote publicly-supported social reform aligns closely with CYS’s mission of providing youth development and diversion programs. In addition to funding constructive, community-building alternatives to incarceration, Measure J specifies areas of job training, small business development, and supportive housing services for development and funding.
In order to contribute meaningfully to the creation of well-rounded and sustainable solutions, CYS is taking part in the early stages or goal- and priority-setting by attending crucial subcommittee meetings. CYS participation in this and all reform processes is rooted in restorative justice, with its emphasis on balancing the needs of all stakeholders.
In what promises to be another significant step for juvenile justice reform in Los Angeles, newly-elected District Attorney George Gascon issued a Special Directive in early December. The directive establishes new guidelines for juvenile justice practices and places an emphasis restorative justice and youth development as alternatives to arrest and prosecution in cases of non-violent offenses.
If implemented, the D.A.’s directives may result in even wider use of evidence-based programs such as those provided by CYS. With significant policy reforms underway at the county and state level, we encourage our family of volunteers and supporters to look into these developments, and we look forward to engaging in discussion of the promise they hold for the communities we serve.
• To learn more Measure J and the ongoing discussion of community priorities, please visit: https://ceo.lacounty.gov/measure-j-2021-spending/
• To read D.A. Gascon’s directive, click on: https://da.lacounty.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/SPECIAL-DIRECTIVE-20-09.pdf