Juvenile Life Without Parole White Paper

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Philadelphia Reentry Coalition
Organization Overview: 

The Reentry Coalition brings together reentry organizations and agencies in Philadelphia to increase communication and coordination, strengthen collaboration, and facilitate capacity-building. Our members are government agencies, non-profit providers, academic orgs, advocacy and legal orgs, etc. The Reentry Coalition which is staffed by the City’s Office of Criminal Justice, in the Managing Director's Office.

Project Name: 
Juvenile Life Without Parole White Paper
Project Type: 
Strategic Plan; Policy Analysis
Project Overview: 

As a result of the January 2016 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Montgomery v. Louisiana, many individuals in Pennsylvania who were sentenced to life without parole as juveniles are being resentenced and paroled and returning to Philadelphia, when they until recently never expected to be released from prison at all. This is a national issue, but Pennsylvania and Philadelphia are ground zero (see https://ysrp.org/juvenile-life-without-parole-jlwop/ for more information). 

The Philadelphia Reentry Coalition created a Juvenile Lifers Without Parole (JLWOP) Working Group, chaired by the Youth Sentencing and Reentry Project, that has met over 10 times since March of 2016. The JLWOP Working Group has created a strong foundation to build from—having identified over 80 partners that are committed to collaborating to support Philadelphia’s juvenile lifers. Through its collaboration thus far, the JLWOP Working Group has been able to identify referral partners and resources (including agencies who are not currently serving the general reentry population), share information across a growing network of practitioners, and build buy-in for sustained collaboration. 

Over the past 18 months, many different areas of need and potential policy or resource recommendations have been identified, both by service providers, advocates, and by the juvenile lifers who have already returned home to Philadelphia. In order to move forward, the Working Group is looking for a graduate student who can synthesize the work of the group to date, and write a white paper outlining the policy, programmatic, and resource priorities that the group can then collectively support.

The final product will be a white paper. 

To be able to help us with this project, a student needs to already have experience working on legal and/or criminal justice reform issues. Additional skills include strong analytical skills, excellent writing, and ideally also the ability to interact with diverse stakeholder groups.
Spots Available: 
Executive; Full-Time
To Apply: 

To apply for this project, please contact Cassie Tomkins at ctomkins@upenn.edu.

Penn LPS

The lifelong learning division of Penn Arts & Sciences

3440 Market Street, Suite 100
Philadelphia, PA 19104-3335

(215) 898-7326

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