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Apartheid Schooling

Senior Researcher Randy Shelden discusses wealth and income inequality in this CJCJ blog.

OP-ED: Opening Our Eyes to Uncomfortable Truths

...when we take into account the level of poverty, kids don’t commit crimes at a higher rate than adults. Take a few seconds and read the previous sentence again. 

Youth Gangs in the Twenty-First Century: Back to the Future

This is the first in a series of blogs adapted from the 4th edition of Youth Gangs in American Society by Shelden along with Sharon Tracy and William Brown (Cengage, 2013).

Gangs taking to the suburbs, including Albemarle

Treating people who come from places where gangs proliferate as gang members themselves only perpetuates the cycle, Maccallair said.

The rich get richer while everyone else struggles

A couple of interesting news stories appeared today in the Los Angeles Times.  The first one is titled “Forbes' tally of billionaires jumps 16%; Buffett drops in list.”  The second is called “Nearly half of Americans are one emergency from financial ruin.”

Debtor's prisons alive and well

As I have written before jails have been largely reserved for the poor and at one time in history words like jails and poorhouses (along with workhouses and prisons) were used interchangeably.

Lead exposure and poverty: Have we gotten "youth violence" all wrong?
CJCJ authors have published several provocative studies documenting that teenagers and young adults are no more prone to risk-taking and crime than older adults once the fact 15-24 year-olds are 2-3 times more likely to suffer the economic and environmental harms associated with poverty than middle-agers is taken into account. We find terms like "adolescent risk taking" and "youth violence" are misnomers; rather, there are generally elevated risks that accompany worsening socioeconomic…
Mapping the landscape of California's juvenile justice population
California is a very diverse state, with 58 counties potentially acting as "laboratories" of policy innovation in the field of juvenile justice.  County and state-level practitioners, and policy makers can learn from these successes and model similar programs in their respective jurisdictions.  However, these same counties also vary in their ability to address complex pressing challenges, specifically as relates to youth offenders.  County-level data-analysis is a necessary building block in…
Romney, the 47% and juvenile justice
GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney committed a major blunder that has gone viral all across the country.  In a moment of candor he told a very exclusive audience (of mostly some of the infamous one percenters and perhaps a few wanabees) that "There are 47 percent of the [American] people who will vote for the president no matter what....there are 47 percent who are with whom, who are dependent on government, who believe they are victims, who believe that government has a responsibility to…
CJCJ staff present on criminal justice policy & reform
On Monday July 9, 2012 I co-presented with my colleague Gerald Miller on criminal justice policy and reform efforts to a group of college students from throughout Northern California.  The students were participating in the Bay Area Urban Project , a 6-week urban immersion program that explores the major issues affecting lower-income communities in cities through a theological lens.  The students in this program study immigration policy, education disparities, human trafficking, and other…
More on inequality
This is an update for my last blog where I provide a brief summary of the state of inequality in American society. Shortly after posting this blog, I accidentally discovered some truly incredible data in Mother Jones magazine.   The charts (found here ) do an even better job than Inequality.org.  Here's what the charts say. To begin with, the huge income growth for the top 1% was helped by the fact that from 1992 to 2007 when their income grew by 392%, their tax rate dropped by 37%.  Because…
Inequality in America
As promised in my last blog , I will summarize the current level of inequality in the United States.  In a word, it is ugly!  By most measures, we are far behind other democratic societies, such as Canada, most European countries and Australia. One of the most common measures of income inequality is known as the Gini Index of Inequality (a value of 0 means perfect equality--everyone earns the same amount; and a value of 100 means perfect inequality--one person earns all), has gone up since…
Social class and education
In my last blog I discussed the importance of social class as a determinant of everything that matters in life.  In this blog I quote a study that stated "Poverty and social disadvantage are most strongly associated with deficits in children's cognitive skills and educational achievements."  Social class strongly correlates with the level of education one receives including the probability of dropping out, which in turn strongly relates to crime and delinquency. Two recent studies further…
Class counts
A recent CJCJ blog by Selena Teji brings up a point that is rarely discussed these days, namely "social class" which is two words rarely heard in public discourse -- except when republicans holler about "class warfare."  Social class does count -- a lot more than anything else.  Indeed, social class is one of the most important factors in human life. Social class position has some direct and indirect consequences, especially in terms of what sociologists refer to as life chances (which is…
And the rich get richer
Here's some news that should surprise no one: the richest 1% made out just fine during the last decade.  For everyone else, well, let us all eat our foreclosures and our life savings! This news comes from a brand new study by a noted expert in the area (who has written about this subject many times), Emmanuel Saez.  His report can be found here . It is a short report and if you look at Table 1 you will find this statement at the bottom: "For example, from 2002 to 2007, average real family…
Kid janitors don't solve poverty

Kid janitors don't solve poverty Politico, December 7, 2011

Justice Policy Journal - Volume 8, Number 1 - Spring 2011
(ISSN 1530-3012) From the editor Warehoused: The Plight of 'Mad' Youths in the Juvenile Justice System Race-Based Decisions: Traffic Citations and Municipal Court Dispositions Mass Shootings in Australia and New Zealand: A Descriptive Study of Incidence From War Zones to Jail: Veteran Reintegration Problems Does Age or Poverty Level Best Predict Criminal Arrest and Homicide Rates? A Preliminary Investigation From the editor By Elizabeth Brown, Ph.D. and Randall G.…
Children and the Recession
The recession that we are experiencing has impacted just about everyone except for the few who have become richer (more about that later).  At this point in time it is not easy to determine the impact on children since it takes time to analyze the toll.  However, as more and more information has become available we can make some assessment. One recent report noted that there have been "an increasing number of children leave home for life on the streets, including many under 13. Foreclosures,…
Hungry Kids
A story in the Los Angeles Times over the weekend caught my eye.  The title tells it all: "Report finds 20% of Californians struggled to feed their families in 2010."  The article started with this: "One in five Californians struggled to afford enough food for themselves and their families last year, according to a new report by the Food Research and Action Center." Families all over the country are struggling as we remain mired in the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. …
The American Gulag: The Correctional Industrial Complex in America

An examination of the political and social elements of the prison industrial complex.

From Beyond Shelter To Behind Bars

A study of San Francisco's practice of policing homelessness. Our Officers and Deputies are highly trained individuals, but they can not be expected to protect us from poverty. 

California Stentencing Institute screenshot

California Sentencing
Institute (CASI)

Explore how California’s 58 counties send their residents to correctional institutions with interactive maps, charts, and downloadable data.

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