National Crittenton president Jeannette Pai-Espinosa published an op-ed today in Juvenile Justice Information Exchange:
“The Trump administration removed the “Girls at Risk” page from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention website, the Sunlight Foundation reported on Oct. 4. It included information about the work of the OJJDP-funded National Girls Initiative (NGI), which has been led in cooperation with OJJDP by the organization I direct, National Crittenton.
Sunlight Foundation discovered the page had been taken down by July — well before the deadline for OJJDP to offer us the third-year renewal of our NGI cooperative agreement. Receiving no formal notice, our agreement simply ended on Sept. 30, leaving us to conclude that the National Girls Initiative would not be continued.
National Crittenton has served as the content expert for NGI since 2013 and took over leadership in 2016. We began this work under the Obama administration and helped develop the 2015 policy guidance “Girls and the Juvenile Justice System,” which called for the juvenile justice system to understand the drivers of girls into the system; to reduce the impact of intersectional disparities on girls in and at risk of entering the system, and to reduce reliance on confinement for girls who pose no risk to public safety. The guidance served to support states in understanding and better addressing the needs of girls.
This policy guidance, identifying improving responses to girls as “an urgent need,” was taken down by this current administration for review before or by February. But months later it has neither been rescinded nor reinstated. No official decision on its status has been announced.”