The National Center for Youth Law (NCYL) invites you to participate in a campaign to end the inappropriate and harmful sedation of tens of thousands of foster children. High doses of psychotropic “antipsychotic” drugs produce lethargic, “zoned out” children, preventing their normal development. Medical guidelines do not sanction such sedation. The year 2012 may be the year that federal and state governments act to curb excessive drugging of our nation’s foster children.
In 2008, new California legislation co-sponsored by NCYL granted public access to records of children who die from abuse or neglect. The law's goal is to help the public determine what, if anything, could be done differently to prevent such tragedies in the future, so that policies and practices of county child protective services may be improved. Since the law went into effect, NCYL has monitored its implementation.
NCYL’s Foster Youth Education Initiative has released its long-awaited report on how California is ensuring foster children receive appropriate educational opportunities. The report examines the creation of education systems meant specifically for foster youth, who do not have biological parents to monitor their academic progress, meet with teachers, enroll them in appropriate classes, and ensure they receive a quality education.
A Review of Alameda County's Collaborative Mental Health Court
Youth spend less time in detention and are less likely to get in trouble with the law after participating in Alameda county's juvenile mental health court. In this report, NCYL describes the workings of the Alameda County Juvenile Collaborative Court, its participants, and the results the court has seen since being established in 2007.
» Read more about NCYL's work in the Alameda County Juvenile Collaborative Court
NCYL is working to make sure out-of-county foster children receive the mental
health care they need.
NCYL has been working to significantly reform juvenile justice practices in Wyoming.
The National Center for Youth Law, Disability Rights Texas, and Texas Appleseed have issued a new report: Thinking Outside the Cell: Alternatives to Incarceration for Youth with Mental Health Needs.
California Senate Bill 9 would give juveniles sentenced to life without parole the opportunity to have their cases reconsidered. The bill was introduced after a similar bill, SB 399, failed to pass the Assembly by two votes in August 2010.
In 2007, NCYL began working to reduce the number of children in Arkansas's juvenile justice system and to better fund community-based programs. Since then, the state has reduced the number of misdemeanor offenders and increased focus on treatment and assessment of delinquents.
NCYL, with other advocates, have called on the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate reports of violence, improper use of restraints, and program deficiencies in 10 lockdown facilities in Texas.
NCYL and the ACLU are working to end Wyoming's practice of prosecuting children in adult courts for minor offenses.
Ensuring foster children receive the education support they need.
A site for all people helping children and youth in California's foster care system succeed in school.
This website is designed to help CA adolescent health care providers understand the many laws that affect their work, with a focus on reproductive health.