Ricardo Martinez Speaks at John Jay Symposium on Juvenile Detention

Ricardo Martinez Speaks at John Jay Symposium on Juvenile Detention

David Utter, of the Southern Poverty Law Center, and Ricardo Martinez, Co-Director of Padres & Jovenes Unidos, speaking at the John Jay conferenceNEW YORK – The John Jay College of Criminal Justice’s Center on Media, Crime and Justice held a two-day conference for journalists on its campus in New York on April 23-24.
Speakers on Monday include: Mark Soler, executive director of the Center for Children’s Law & Policy; Vincent Schiraldi, commissioner of New York City’s Department of Probation; Ricardo Martinez, co-director, Padres & Jovenes Unidos and David Utter, director of policy, the Florida office of the Southern Poverty Law Center.
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Excerpt from the article:
Ricardo Martinez, the co-director of Padres & Jovenes, spoke about teen stupidity as well.
Authorities, he said, take simple stupid behavior and find a law to fit it. Martinez, who is based in Denver, said the current policies used by many schools, including some in Denver, are part of a factory to create a nation with the highest incarceration of youth on the planet.
All of this starts with discipline in the schools, he said. Existing policies, he said, push the students out of the schools onto the streets and into trouble.
The thought by many school administrators, he said, is to throw out the bad kids so the good kids can learn. But, he said, his organization has yet to find a school that is throwing kids out and doing well academically.
Martinez also spent some time on what he sees as a concerted effort by the system to disenfranchise entire segments of society.
It is no accident, he explained, that zero tolerance has coincided with a change in demographics in the United States. “It is not an accident, it is a question of changing demographics,” he said.

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