• Transitions by Richard Ross What’s more important? Returning to the same institution after 40 years (gasp); or working full time to create a booklet that highlights effective alternatives to juvenile detention? I plan to place such a booklet in the courtroom of every juvenile and family court judge or public defender in the country. Every. Single. […] December 1, 2017
  • “I’m not allowed out.” I’m in a segregation cell. I’ve been here for one and a half months, out of a 6-month sentence. I came to visit my grandma here in town in the summer but I got in trouble. My parents live in different states. I’ve been in detention in other states three times now. I’m here for credit card theft, but I’m in segregation because they […] August 11, 2016
  • “I’ve been coming here since I was ten or eleven.” I’m being held in detention. I’ve been coming here since I was ten or eleven. I was expelled from school in the 6th grade. There are problems at home. My younger brother is on probation. My mom works for the cable company. I live with my mother, grandmother, and aunt—she’s 15. I don’t talk to my father, he left when I was six. He tried to visit me once […] March 9, 2016
  • “Any time they hear my name they lock me up.” I’ve been in the timeout room for two days. I’ve been in detention four times. The first time I was 13. I’ve been in isolation eight times. The longest time was two weeks. Any conflict or altercation they lock me up. Doesn’t matter who’s to blame they lock me up. They won’t let me tell […] January 21, 2016
  • “I always stuck with school. I always had good grades.” I’ve been here two months now. The first time I was here was on a burglary charge. I was 14. Two other times I was here for cutting off my house arrest bracelet. Old charges that popped up and they sent me back downstairs from the courtroom down to detention. My P.O. (probation officer) is […] November 25, 2015
  • Alabama: A Different Approach By Richard Ross Cathy Woods is the assistant director of one of the more progressive juvenile detention centers in the United States: Tuscaloosa County Juvenile Detention Center in Alabama. Tuscaloosa isn’t just the home of the Crimson Tide or where George Wallace stood on the schoolhouse steps trying to thwart desegregation; it’s the location of a […] September 8, 2015
  • [KCRW] World Isn’t Worth Saving if the Price Is a Tear of an Innocent Child Last night on KCRW’s Art Talk Edward Goldman briefed listeners on Ross and his work to document the state of the juvenile justice system. Here is an excerpt from the show: Ross was able to gain access to various American juvenile detention facilities, where kids as young as 10 are being incarcerated for an unreasonably long […] July 8, 2015
  • CNN Photo Essay + Interview: Girls behind bars tell their stories “For a ling time, I took pride in not prostituting. My last relapse, I started prostituting on my own,” said B.X., 18. “My mom and dad were both alcoholics. They owned a bar. I was left alone a lot. My mom was drunk when she found me on the street. I had run away. She […] March 26, 2015
  • PBS Photo Essay: Life inside a juvenile detention center for girls Three girls at a juvenile facility in Racine, Wisconsin. Roughly 30 percent of incarcerated youth in the United States are female. Thanks, PBS! Today Girls in Justice was featured in a small photo essay on PBS NewsHour written by Mike Fritz. March 17, 2015
  • Too many girls are locked up to keep them ‘safe’ This story is also featured on the San Francisco Chronicle By Richard Ross There is a growing problem of girls and law enforcement. The problem is not the violent catastrophic deaths that have captured the news. It is the slower escalation in how we treat the girls — no less life threatening and just as destructive. This is […] February 26, 2015
  • The [Justice] Short List 12-5-14 Highlights from the week’s juvenile justice and justice related articles, videos and more that are worth your time. Juvenile Justice Center Teens Get Up-Close Look at City Jobs A breath of fresh air comes our way from Corpus Christi, Texas! Youth from the juvenile justice center were given a tour of City Hall, met Mayor […] December 5, 2014
  • “In my country people play like that.” This is my first time I detention. I’ve been here 5 months because my attorney said I need to see a special doctor. I’m from Norwalk. I live with my mom, who’s a babysitter, stepdad, who’s a mechanic, and three step brothers. I don’t know my real dad. I’m in eighth grade. No there’s no […] September 17, 2014