Reducing Structural Barriers to School and Work for People with Juvenile Records

Millions of people face significant, persistent barriers to education and employment due to their past involvement with the juvenile justice system.

The Issue

A growing number of states have worked to limit restrictions related to education and employment for people with criminal records. However, few have devoted the same attention to how these “collateral consequences” impact people with juvenile records. Like adults, people with juvenile records can experience a variety of barriers to their continued education and employment, even as a result of committing minor offenses. These restrictions especially affect people of color due to persistent racial and ethnic disparities in rates of juvenile justice involvement.

The Study

Our brief outlines findings and recommendations from an unprecedented analysis of education and employment barriers that people with juvenile records face as a result of state laws and public and private hiring and admissions practices.

See the Study

Policy Solutions

Our policy solutions toolkit highlights five key areas that policymakers can champion to reduce legal barriers to continued education and employment for people with juvenile records. Each area includes sample legislative language, as well as best practice examples from across the country, that policymakers can use to guide reforms in their own states.


About the Authors

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Deputy Division Director, Corrections and Reentry
Josh Weber directs the CSG Justice Center's juvenile justice program, which focuses on helping states use effective methods to reduce recidivism and improve outcomes for youth in contact with the juvenile justice system. Previously, Josh spent 10 years working on
building the capacity of programs and systems that serve vulnerable youth in the juvenile justice, youth development, workforce development, and child welfare systems. Josh managed research programs for the Youth Development and Research Fund in Maryland and the Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago. In addition, Josh led the development and implementation of NYC Administration for Children’s Services' alternative to placement and reentry program for juveniles using evidence-based practices. He also directed the District of Columbia’s Justice Grants Administration, which managed all federal juvenile and criminal justice grants for the District. Josh received his BA in psychology from Duke University and his MPA from Princeton University.
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    Former Senior Policy Analyst, Corrections and Reentry
    Jacob Agus-Kleinman worked with the juvenile justice team to provide technical assistance to states, counties, and nonprofit organizations to improve outcomes for youth in both criminal and juvenile justice systems. Prior to joining the CSG Justice Center, he worked with
    Pew’s Public Safety Performance Project, supporting states in the adoption of adult and juvenile sentencing and corrections reforms. Earlier in his career, he worked with Lawyers Without Borders, the Washtenaw County Public Defender’s Office, and as an AmeriCorps VISTA with the Arab-American Family Support Center. Jacob received a BGS with a concentration in urban studies from the University of Michigan and is a Justice Policy Network Fellow.
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    Project Manager, Corrections and Reentry
    Josh Gaines focuses on issues involving the collateral consequences of criminal conviction, barriers to work, and relief from the long-term impacts of a criminal record. He previously served as the deputy director of the Collateral Consequences Resource Center, worked extensively
    on the Restoration of Rights Project, and provided counsel for federal pardon applicants. Josh received his BA in sociology from North Carolina State University and his JD from the Washington College of Law at American University.
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  • This research was funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. We thank them for their support but acknowledge that the findings and conclusions presented in this report are those of the authors alone, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Foundation.