Author Archives: John Lam

A leader, athlete and friend says goodbye to Kid CAT

By John Lam Cleo Cloman III is a leader, an athlete, and a friend to many in San Quentin. He is also one of several Kid CAT members who were recently found suitable for parole under SB 261, a law that gives special consideration to youthful offenders. “It doesn’t surprise me that Cleo received a […]

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Mothers face custody and employment challenges upon their re-entry

Incarcerated mothers face challenges re-entering society, especially regaining custody of their children and finding employment. Upon their release, mothers are more likely to have their parental rights terminated because of their incarceration, according to a 2016 Rutgers University academic paper by Janet Garcia, of the School of Criminal Justice.  According to the paper, part of […]

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How parents talk can hinder child development

The way parents communicate with their children may hinder their kids from developing healthy self-esteem, emotions and behavior, according to a child behavior author. “The problem is that at its core, this way of speaking is all about control. We use it to tell our kids what we want them to say (‘Say sorry!’)…what we […]

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Mayors and police chiefs push back against deportation policies

By John Lam Mayors and police chiefs are pushing back against President Donald Trump’s proposed deportation policies. “I don’t intend on doing anything different,” said Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck in an interview with the Los Angeles Times. “We are not going to engage in law enforcement activities solely based on somebody’s immigration status. […]

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Youth Offender Program gains traction at San Quentin

By John Lam Youth Offender Program (YOP) inmates between the ages of 18 and 23 are embracing a program specially created for them at San Quentin. “We started a support group specifically for YOPs originally with three guys, and in three months the attendance exploded. The YOPs have been recruiting and are spreading the word […]

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They Call Us Monsters sheds light on juvenile reform

Aiming to de-stigmatize California’s incarcerated juveniles, a documentary entitled They Call Us Monsters sheds light on the lives of those incarcerated and the state’s legislative debate over juvenile sentencing reform.    “Juan Gamez, Antonio Hernandez and Jara Nava are the youthful offenders at the heart of…a new documentary that follows their lives in a Los […]

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Parolees having trouble getting help with treatment programs

By John Lam Drug offenders are having trouble getting services to help with their addictions once they get out of prison, a report by three newspapers concludes. “The state has not yet invested enough money in treatment programs,” according to a seven-month study conducted by the Ventura County Star, the Redding Record Searchlight, and the […]

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Re-imagining new uses for shuttered prisons

By John Lam Shuttered prisons across the nation are given new life by private developers, non-profits and community leaders as economic development and social benefit centers. “In recent years, entrepreneurs, elected officials and community leaders in a handful of states have re-imagined sites that once incarcerated prisoners for new uses,” The Sentencing Project reported in […]

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Four leaders honored for juvenile justice reforms

By John Lam Four individuals have been honored for their work in reforming the Tennessee juvenile justice system. “We wanted to honor these leaders because they understand that Tennessee’s youth justice system is like a maze, with too many entrances and lots of dead ends,” said Sarah Bryer, who directs the National Juvenile Justice Network […]

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LA hosts juvenile justice summit: ‘Smart on Safety’

Setting an agenda for the next steps in California By John Lam A panel of California’s criminal justice reform leaders recently held a summit to discuss what’s next on the agenda. “A ballroom full of lawmakers, academics and criminal justice reform advocates, with a sprinkling of state and local officials…gathered in LA’s Millennium Biltmore Hotel” […]

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