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CJCJ Executive Director Daniel Macallair and San Francisco Public Defender Jeff Adachi

The Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice mourns the passing of Jeff Adachi, San Francisco’s Public Defender. Jeff was a tireless champion for justice and dignity for all San Franciscans. We were proud to support Jeff’s bold leadership on issues ranging from bail reform to the disproportionate policing of communities of color.

Jeff and his colleagues in the public defender’s office are highly regarded national leaders and CJCJ’s programs work alongside them every day in San Francisco to fight for community safety. Jeff’s legacy continues through the many lives he touched. Jeff was a visionary who understood the central voice of young people in developing transformative juvenile justice policies.

Pictured (left to right) Jeff Adachi and CJCJ’s Children’s Waiting Rooms staff: Dinky Manek Enty, Maire Larkin, and Tonnika Williams.

As Jeff noted at a CJCJ youth justice conference, We have to listen to the voices of the people who are most affected by these decisions… the question is what impact is that going to have on youth and their parents.”

This week, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously adopted Ordinance No. 181217, which has been named the Jeff Adachi Youth Rights” ordinance. This ordinance guarantees legal protections for youth ages 17 and younger who are detained by police. It is a testament to Jeff’s important legacy, which we honor today. Our community is stronger because of Jeff and we are forever thankful for his vision, justice, and leadership. Patricia Lee, Deputy Public Defender and member of CJCJ’s Board of Directors, explains:

We are so excited to have this important legislation be named in honor of our fearless visionary leader, Jeff Adachi, who championed the rights of youth and provided a level of resources not only to our juvenile unit but to the communities in San Francisco where our youth and families reside. Through this ordinance, Jeff is still championing the rights of our youth. This decision will have a far-reaching impact on youth in SF and hopefully soon in the rest of California and the nation. Rest in power, Jeff Adachi!”

- Daniel Macallair, CJCJ Executive Director