whose children were at that time (or formerly) incarcerated at Tallulah. FFLIC efforts were at first unsuccessful. It took another two years before a full-fledged legislative and public media campaign known as “Close Tallulah Now!” was begun in force. The campaign was undertaken by JJPL, FFLIC, and the Coalition for Effective Juvenile Justice Reform, with strong support from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the Youth Law Center, the Justice Policy Institute, and the Grassroots Initiative. Two years of intense advocacy work resulted in the passage of the Juvenile Justice Reform Act of 2003 (known as Act 1225), calling for Tallulah’s closing (Celeste et al., 2005). In 2004, the legislature passed a bill creating Youth and Children Services Planning Boards, composed of all stakeholders at the local level (Bervera, 2003). In 2006, Louisiana became a MacArthur Foundation Models for Change site, and five local sites (encompassing seven parishes) have been engaged since then in building an infrastructure of local alternatives to formal processing and secure confinement, promoting access to evidence-based services, and addressing the problem of DMC (Griffin, 2009). Today, FFLIC continues to monitor conditions of confinement and to advocate for numerous reforms, including an increased role for the family in several facilities in Louisiana.
New York’s Transformative Initiatives
In September 2008, a Task Force on Transforming the Juvenile Justice System was convened by New York’s governor, David Paterson. Chaired by Jeremy Travis, president of John Jay College, the task force was composed of 32 juvenile justice experts drawn from around the state. It is noteworthy that 20 of them represented private organizations—universities, TTA organizations, advocacy groups, and community service organizations. The focus of the task force was the treatment of adjudicated juveniles found guilty of committing a delinquent act (a crime committed by someone between ages 7 and 15) and subject to a dispositional order. The task force’s recommendations called for reducing the use of institutional placement, reinvesting resources in community-based alternatives, eliminating racial disparities, improving services during custody and after release, and ensuring system accountability (Task Force on Transforming Juvenile Justice, 2009).
The New York task force came on the heels of a major effort already under way to reform juvenile justice services. With the support of Governor Paterson, Gladys Carrión, the commissioner of the state’s Office of Children and Family Services, had begun the process of closing unneeded facilities and implementing a comprehensive system reform agenda. She was able to amass considerable support by working closely with community organizations to develop necessary programs, securing foundation money for programs, collaborating with the juvenile justice network (an organiza-