UNLV Boyd School of Law Professor Addie Rolnick talks with Jon Wainwright about her work to improve the juvenile justice system for tribal youth. Professor Rolnick goes over the biggest issues facing tribal youth who enter the juvenile justice system and offers the solutions she thinks are necessary to fix some of the cracks in the system.
One of the issues that we discussed that truly blew me away the lack of data on tribal youth in the justice system. Collecting data seems to me to be one of the easiest things an institution can do. This is one of the facets of the juvenile justice system that Professor Rolnick has been working to improve, having testified to Congress about this issue, as well as other improvements such as allowing for greater tribal control over juvenile justice, more flexible funding for tribes, and communication requirements for states and federal agencies, among other recommendations. As I mentioned before, she has brought these issues up to Congress as recently as last September when she testified to the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs’ Oversight Hearing on “Justice for Native Youth: The GAO Report on ‘Native American Youth Involvement in Justice Systems and Information on Grants to Help Address Juvenile Delinquency.'”
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