Maine Youth Justiceis a nonpartisan campaign to end youth incarceration in Maine and invest in a range of community-based alternatives that respond to young people’s needs, support families, and build community in support of community alternatives to youth incarceration.
Our vision of youth justice is a collaborative and equitable response to harm that recognizes and builds on the strengths of individuals and community.
To close Long Creek and use the money spent to sustain that facility to create safer and stronger communities by investing in a continuum of community-based alternatives to incarceration for youth where all of Maine’s young people can thrive.
Our Statement of Principles
We believe the best place for children and youth to grow and thrive is in the community with the support of friends and family. We are committed to advocating for alternatives to incarceration that respond to the needs of young people by meeting them where they are.
We believe that the harm caused by incarceration ripples throughout entire communities and touches everyone.
We believe that safety comes through strengthening communities, addressing the root causes of harm, and promoting individual and collective well-being, not incarceration.
We believe that no one is disposable. True justice is preventing and repairing harm and promoting healing, not punishment or retribution.
We oppose oppression in all forms for youth and adults.
We believe that the justice system is bias and marginalizes populations based on their race, religion, gender identity and expression, class, ability, addiction and mental health status, and sexual orientation.
We believe in the power of the collective. We seek to form alliances through building trust, open communication and vulnerability by collaborating with those who have lived experience with the justice system and incarceration and those who do not.
We believe in self advocacy and determination. Youth and those most impacted by the justice system must lead the transformation of the juvenile justice system.
We believe that family is chosen and young people should be able to determine who that is for them.
We believe that all people deserve to be treated with dignity, respect and love.