We advance justice every day by building equity, support, and empowerment into legal systems.
Children and youth involved in the justice system as victims or witnesses to crimes face many challenges. To support them, the Center for Justice Innovation has been working with the Office for Victims of Crime to create interactive and educational materials that validate children’s feelings and help them understand how the justice system works.
A new addition to these materials was released last month to support children and young people in Native communities who may need to interact with tribal, state, and/or federal justice systems. The resources—culturally-specific, inclusive, trauma-informed booklets for different age groups on the criminal legal system and child welfare system—walk readers in a developmentally-appropriate manner through situations they may encounter, providing such information as:
- How the legal system works
- Their rights
- The roles of the practitioners they might meet
- Ways they can cope with the feelings that might come up for them during the process
The artwork and stories throughout these materials were developed by Native artists and authors, and the effort was guided by a group of national stakeholders representing a wide range of tribal justice leaders and practitioners.