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>> Disconnected Youth Leg Update


On September 18, the Healthy Families and Communities Subcommittee of the U.S. House Education and Labor Committee held a hearing titled "The Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act." According to Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY), Chairwoman of the House Subcommittee on Healthy Families and Communities, the purpose of the hearing was to "seek an understanding of the nexus of the child welfare system and the juvenile justice system", "explore the connection of mental health to the juvenile justice system" and focus on "prevention and addressing needs on the front end" in order to improve the juvenile justice system. Read the hearing testimony at

On September 16, the Gang Abatement and Prevention Act of 2007 (S.456) passed in the Senate. The bill enhances gang crime law enforcement and revises criminal penalties for violent crimes. On October 16, Rep. Robert C. "Bobby" Scott (D-VA), Chairman of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, introduced H.R. 3846, the Youth Prison Reduction through Opportunities, Mentoring, Intervention, Support, and Education (Youth PROMISE) Act. The legislation focuses on evidence-based prevention and intervention measures as an alternative to bills focused on taking punitive measures to reduce gangs and gang violence.