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Incorporating the realities of race and the impact of racial injustice at every stage of a client’s case is a critical component in providing holistic, effective, client-centered legal advocacy to Black and brown youth. Defenders and advocates contribute to systemic reform when they challenge racial injustice in their legal advocacy on behalf of individual clients. Fourth Amendment jurisprudence is ripe for these types of arguments.
This session will encourage participants to shift the reasonable-person standard that underpins current Fourth Amendment jurisprudence to one that focuses on the actions of the “reasonable Black child.” Incorporating knowledge of implicit racial bias, adolescent development, and the relationship between Black and brown youth and the police, this session will help participants identify strategies to raise issues of race and adolescence in Fourth Amendment practice. Trainers will urge participants to consider the commonsense judgments and inferences that flow readily from the unique interplay between race and adolescence in a police-youth encounter.
Participants will discuss:
How race and adolescence affect every critical question in the Fourth Amendment analysis;
The extent to which a child’s race affects the court’s objective inquiry about whether a police-youth encounter ventures from a “contact” into a seizure;
The extent that a child’s race affects the voluntariness of consent;
The extent that a child’s race affects the officers’ interpretation of a child’s behavior; and
The importance of raising our client’s narrative and experience in courtroom advocacy to empower our clients and effect change in Fourth Amendment jurisprudence.
This training is available to all juvenile defense professionals, including juvenile defenders, policy advocates, investigators, social workers, mitigation specialists, paralegals, clerks, legal secretaries, and other staff members in support of this work.