UTEC is committed to ending violence and poverty, and that requires improving policies in addition to helping individual young adults redefine their futures. Our statewide policymaking process works toward both. Our young people continue to organize youth-led campaigns with partners across the Commonwealth while at the same time working to develop UTEC’s official Policy Platform for the 2017-18 legislative calendar year. Our platform is broken into two major categories:
- Re-thinking justice for young adults and
- Ending generational violence and poverty.
Our work to re-think young adult justice prioritizes “An Act relative to sealing of juvenile records and expungement of court records (S.944, H.2309)” legislation to create a new law allowing young adults and juveniles to seal and expunge criminal records, which would remove significant barriers to employment, education, housing, and other opportunities – all proven to help reduce recidivism.
UTEC also prioritizes “An Act to promote better outcomes for young people in the Commonwealth (H.3037)” legislation to raise the age of juvenile jurisdiction in Massachusetts gradually from 18 to 21. Part of this focus includes ongoing efforts to develop specialized young-adult units in partnership with the Middlesex County Sherriff’s and Essex County Sherriff’s offices.
To support our continued work to reduce recidivism and prevent youth violence, UTEC prioritizes the following budget line items that fund our work:
- Safe and Successful Youth Initiative (4000-0005)
- Re-Entry Grants (7003-0150)
- Youth At-Risk Grants (4590-1507)
- Shannon Anti-Gang Grants (8100-0111)
- Council for State Governments Justice Reinvestment (1599-1500)
Our work towards ending generational violence and poverty includes our prioritization of two-generational strategies for our young adults and their children. UTEC currently prioritizes “An Act establishing a special commission on two-generation approaches to childhood education (S.38, H.1969)” legislation, which would help align administrative programs and state policies to better serve the needs of both young adults and their children.
To support our Two-Generation (2Gen) work supporting our young adults and their whole families together, UTEC prioritizes the following budget line items that could fund this work:
- Learn To Earn (7002-1080)
- Family Mentoring Pilot (3000-7020)
To learn more about UTEC’s policy work or to get involved, you can contact UTEC’s Director of Organizing and Policymaking Geoff Foster at firstname.lastname@example.org or 978-856-3947. For an outline of our policy platform, click here.
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Source: Lowell Sun