Defend Children: A Blueprint for Effective Juvenile Defender Services

In 1967 the Supreme Court ruled in In re Gault that youth facing delinquency prosecution are entitled to certain procedural safeguards, including the right to counsel. Current practices, however, allow an astounding number of justice-involved youth to appear in court without a lawyer. Mary Ann Scali discusses a “blueprint” for juvenile defense reform, which includes seven recommendations for providing effective juvenile defender services. The blueprint calls for a comprehensive and systemic approach to ensure children’s right to counsel.