What is the School-to-Prison Pipeline?
The school-to-prison pipeline is a process through which students are pushed out of schools and into prisons.
In other words, it is a process of criminalizing youth that is carried out by disciplinary policies and practices within schools that put students into contact with law enforcement. Once they are put into contact with law enforcement for disciplinary reasons, many are then pushed out of the educational environment and into the juvenile and criminal justice systems.
Breaking the Prison Pipeline with Restorative Justice
It is important to recognize this problem is the result of hundreds of years of systemic and institutional racism and there is no single policy that will dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline. However, we can take important steps to keep as many young people out of jail as possible. One such step is Restorative Justice.
Restorative Justice is a theory of justice that emphasizes repairing the harm caused by criminal behavior. It is best accomplished through cooperative processes that allow all willing stakeholders to meet, although other approaches are available when that is impossible. This can lead to the transformation of people, relationships and communities.
Mid-City CAN's position on Restorative Justice in City Heights
Mid-City CAN is an advocate for Restorative Justice. We serve as the community's partner in education, law enforcement, and legislative systems. Our community recognizes the ongoing need for clear and concise communication regarding what this work involves, how it is being delivered, and what impact it is having in our schools and neighborhoods. We are dedicated to organizing, empowering, and mobilizing others for the sustainable and systemic promotion of compassionate, peaceful and responsive change through restorative practices and restorative justice.
Mid-City CAN envisions a world where young people thrive and everything is possible when we invest in youth education, not incarceration.