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This Is a Story You Have to Tell: Women, Girls, and the Criminal Justice System

NCJ Number
Date Published
Girl Scouts of the USA
This curriculum is intended for girls and young women at risk for contact with the criminal justice system and can be used in juvenile detention centers, groups that serve youth, alternative sentencing and restorative justice programs, and other community-based settings.
The curriculum centers around three film documentaries, “Facing Life: Cynthia’s Story,” “Girls on the Wall,” and “Troop 1500.” These films engage participants in discussions about the criminal justice system, factors that put teens at risk for contact with the criminal justice system; the impact of mass incarceration on individuals, families, and communities; and effective responses to these issues. The films and the lessons are built around the central issue of how women and girls who have been involved in the criminal justice system can become leaders in the community. The eight lessons of the curriculum address the strengthening of resiliency in overcoming adversity and risk; trends in the criminal justice system and their adverse effects; the building of empathy and personal accountability for harm to others; constructive channels for personal expression; features and accessibility off existing community resources; and the benefits of being involved in a mentoring program. An eighth lesson challenges participants who have been involved in the criminal justice system to draw on what they have learned from their experiences in becoming leaders in their communities in addressing the needs of girls and women at risk for contact with the criminal justice system.
Date Created: October 17, 2017