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All young people must have the opportunity to meaningfully participate in our society.  The ACLU Youth Policy project seeks to ensure that young people – particularly those who have been historically excluded or underserved – receive meaningful education and services in communities, instead of being pushed to a juvenile justice system that will undermine their ability to be successful as adults.  Our current focus is on reforming school discipline policies and practices, working to limit school-based referrals to the juvenile justice system, and decreasing the over-reliance on jails and prisons for young people in the juvenile and adult criminal law systems.


Monday, December 11, 2023
Reducing the racial wealth gap requires lawmakers to enact proactive strategies
Thursday, November 2, 2023
What it is, how it works, and expanding access across Washington
Tuesday, July 11, 2023
Automated systems are changing the way Child Welfare agencies work. Are the outcomes helping kids?
News Release, Published: 
Tuesday, March 21, 2023
Over 30 labor, tribal, medical groups, and criminal justice organizations joined the ACLU-WA and FAMM in support of a bill that retroactively and prospectively repeals the use of prior juvenile convictions to automatically enhance future sentences in adult courts.
Monday, February 6, 2023
One parent recounted their son saying that he couldn’t breathe, and that he thought he was going to die. Another described how her kindergartener was placed in isolation, often for “cussing,“ many times a week for months. A survivor described witnessing restraint at a non-public agency as “an everyday thing” in all classrooms. 
Thursday, September 22, 2022
Educators are grappling with ways to teach topics like race, gender, and sexuality. But rather than embracing open dialogue about these issues, state legislatures and lawmakers throughout the country are working to limit the way schools discuss them. 
News Release, Published: 
Thursday, August 18, 2022
The American Civil Liberties Union, along with 12 ACLU state affiliates and represented by Cooley LLP, filed an amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court today urging the court to uphold the constitutionality of the Indian Child Welfare Act.