March | April 2017

Acting Administrator Garry Pledges OJJDP’s Support at Washington’s Smart on Juvenile Justice Launch

“The fact that Washington competed for and won this planning grant is a testament to your ambitious commitment to tackling reform across multiple components of your state’s juvenile justice system,” said OJJDP Acting Administrator Eileen M. Garry during Washington State’s Smart on Juvenile Justice Reform Project Launch.

The state-organized meeting was held on March 29–31, 2017, in Olympia and Tacoma to discuss challenges and opportunities for addressing juvenile justice reform, the implementation of OJJDP’s fiscal year 2016 Statewide Juvenile Justice Reform Planning Grant, and the use of training and technical assistance that OJJDP provides through the Council of State Governments (CSG).

left quoteI am here to reiterate clearly our support for you. We are all in this together for our nation’s children.right quote

—Eileen M. Garry, OJJDP Acting Administrator

Approximately 100 people attended the meeting, including representatives from Washington Governor Jay Inslee’s office; State Senator Jeannie Darneille; Superior Court Judge James Orlando, Vice Chair of the Washington State Partnership Council on Juvenile Justice; and former OJJDP Administrator Shay Bilchik, founder and director of the Center for Juvenile Justice Reform at Georgetown University.

Ms. Garry applauded the state for bringing together key stakeholders to collaborate on reform and for prioritizing the elimination of racial and ethnic disparities in its juvenile justice system. Washington reports reductions in the number of youth in out-of-home residential placement and youth with low-level offenses committed to its state juvenile corrections agency.


“This meeting is our opportunity to listen to the challenges you’ve faced—as well as the solutions you’ve developed—to implement reform,” Ms. Garry said. “We’re here to help identify additional resources we can bring to bear and to offer support to you in any way we can.”

The meeting featured several focus groups and cross-sector discussions and offered debriefings for the Washington Smart on Juvenile Justice Strategic Task Force, OJJDP representatives, and CSG technical assistance staff. The meeting also included remarks and presentations from Senator Darneille, Washington State Department of Social and Health Services Assistant Secretary Marybeth Queral and colleagues, representatives from Washington’s State Partnership Council on Juvenile Justice, representatives from CSG, and youth who were previously or are currently involved in Washington’s juvenile justice system.

OJJDP launched the Smart on Juvenile Justice Initiative in 2014 to support programs that promote juvenile justice system reforms, provide training and technical assistance to juvenile prosecutors and defenders, and address racial and ethnic disparities in the juvenile justice system. The Smart on Juvenile Justice suite of initiatives promote reform through the adoption of evidence-based programs and policies, data-driven decisionmaking models, and developmentally appropriate, trauma-informed approaches to juvenile justice.


To learn more about OJJDP's Smart on Juvenile Justice Initiative, visit the OJJDP website.