INTRODUCING OUR NEW MISSION & NAME
Youth Educating Police is now Raising Justice. With our new name, comes a new team, new board members, and more.
SEPTEMBER 1, 2020
It’s official. Youth Educating Police is now Raising Justice. We renew our commitment to breaking down the systems of oppression affecting young people across the country, and we stand with the bold and fearless youth activists fighting for a more equitable justice system. Raising Justice means we refuse to stay silent as a systematically racist and backwards justice system continues to take lives and keep young people locked away and kept from flourishing academically and socially. We, instead, exist to raise the humanity and the justice of those most impacted by our officers, courts and systems of incarceration. Now it’s time for new solutions, new leaders, and new approaches to public safety. As we mark the commencement of our new operating name, we also proudly proclaim a new national organization team, diversified board of directors and ambitious but pragmatic expansion plan. This is Raising Justice.
Youth Educating Police was founded in 2017 with the express mission of understanding and working to correct biases in training and present police officers insight into the critical differences we know distinguish our peers and that demand specified attention and care. Countless, senseless deaths nationally and right here in Portland drove us to this work but we couldn’t adequately appreciate what it would take to affect real change. As our work grew, it became painfully obvious that training alone does not constitute progress if policy change does not follow course. We realized the power of our collective voices and the potential for rethinking, not just reforming, existing systems of oppression and prejudice. Raising Justice was borne from this trajectory of work and a summer of national reckoning that spoke these sentiments to power.
The name Raising Justice signifies our resolute commitment to ending all discrimination, oppression and victimization inherent to our current criminal justice systems. We are acknowledging those speaking up for more transformative change, and are working towards dismantling these unjust systems, whether in policing, prosecution or in the allocation of public and social services. Raising Justice still views policing as a vehicle for how young people, especially BIPOC youth, encounter systemic oppression as a first order affect but we are widening our focus to more foundational issues.
As we unveil our new name and a new website portal to showcase our work, we are also fundamentally shifting how we approach our programmatic goals. Raising Justice now boasts a growing team of 12 youth leaders, representing cities and communities across five states. Our operations are now overseen by a newly diversified and expanded board of directors, aggregating local and national voices in education, philanthropy and public service. Most importantly, Raising Justice is now pursuing change through three core programs, all rooted in dialogue and reducing system interaction. Our Policy and Advocacy initiative pushes for policy change and greater youth-adult partnerships, our Education and Training initiative builds capacity for community informed training and education programs, and our Grassroots Organizing Initiative mobilizes communities through dialogue, storytelling and community building.
When Justice is for all, we ALL rise.