Vision Statement -- Global Youth Justice proactively champions volunteer-driven strategies which help alleviate some of the world's more pressing and costly social problems. We actively support the empowerment of youth to serve as volunteer youth justice advocates for a more peaceful world. We strive to improve the quality of life for humans through reducing both crime rates and historic-high incarceration rates around the globe.
We initially achieve this through favorable
outcomes that result from advancing the global expansion of quality "youth
justice" and "juvenile justice" voluntary diversion programs
often called youth court, teen court, peer court, student court, peer jury and youth peer
panel. A record 1,407 plus communities around the globe now operate one
of these volunteer-driven local diversion programs.
Establishment -- Global Youth Justice was incorporated as a limited liability corporation in the State of Massachusetts (USA) in March, 2009 by Scott Bernard Peterson. After leading more than 170 youth justice initiatives since 1993 to advance the local, state, national, and global youth justice movement, Global Youth Justice, LLC is the first private corporate initiative of Scott Bernard Peterson. Global Youth Justice, LLC was established primarily for purposes of reducing crime and incarceration rates by proactively championing the quality local expansion of quality juvenile justice/youth justice programs commonly referred to as youth courts, also referred to as teen courts, peer courts, student courts, youth peer juries, and youth peer panels.
Background -- Global Youth Justice works on a wide range of fronts around the world to include educating elected and appointed and public officials. Global Youth Justice, LLC engages in providing international leadership, facilitate global coordination, build collaborations, disseminate information, recognize excellence, launch and support public and private campaigns, undertake public relations activities, generate new resources, convene events, provide training and technical assistance on a local, state, national, and global level, and undertake a wide range of other activities as deemed appropriate and necessary to achieve the mission and vision of Global Youth Justice.
Some of the Global Youth Justice activities are funded by a widening range of public and private sources. Public sources include the federal Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) at the United States Department of Justice and private sources include hundreds of participants who participate in our International Trainings and Institutes to Establish, Enhance, and Expand a local Youth Justice Diversion Program.
Global Youth Justice, LLC is a Limited Liability Corporation established in 2009 and is protected by a U.S. Copyrights and Trademark ruling approved in 2009. Global Youth Justice, LLC is owned by Scott Bernard Peterson. Scott Peterson's Global Youth Justice, LLC plans to incorporate as an International Foundation in early 2012. In 2011, Global Youth Justice launched Youth Justice USA for purposes of youth justice activities taking place solely in the United States of America.
What are Youth Justice Programs? They are juvenile justice diversion programs commonly referred to as Youth Court, Teen Court, Peer Court, Student Court and Youth Peer Panel. They are a rapidly expanding juvenile justice program in which youth are sentenced by their peers for minor crimes, offenses, and/or violations. These programs are administered and operated most often on a local level by law enforcement agencies, probation departments, juvenile courts, schools, and/or nonprofit organizations. These programs offer communities an opportunity to provide immediate consequences for primarily first-time youthful offenders.
What’s more, youth courts provide a peer-operated sentencing mechanism that constructively allows young people to take responsibility, be held accountable, and make restitution for committing a crime, offense, and/or violation. The other significant civic, service, and law-related education benefits of these programs are fueling their growth rate as local communities learn more about the education, prevention, and intervention benefits of these helpful justice juvenile justice programs.
Harnessing Positive Peer Pressure for Favorable Outcomes. Peer pressure—which can be a risk factor for delinquency is harnessed in these programs and can exert a powerful, positive influence over adolescent behavior. Not all youth involved with these programs are there because of anti-social, delinquent and/or criminal behavior. In addition to providing constructive consequences for juvenile offenders, these programs also offer civic and volunteer opportunities for other youth in the community. Youth volunteers actively participate in the community decision making process for dealing with juvenile delinquency as they gain hands-on knowledge of the juvenile and criminal justice system and the rule of law.
The volunteer service opportunities offered by these programs for both youth and adults are both practical and meaningful. Their growing appeal as a viable service vehicle for addressing the social problem of juvenile crime has resulted in these programs emerging as one of the most well respected and leading volunteer service programs in the United States. These programs and their rapid expansion in America are a text book example of a “grass-roots community-based program”.
A Volunteer Driven Local to Global Youth Justice Expansion. The continued growth and maintenance of these programs has been largely driven by the adult community leaders on a local and state level who have championed these programs as a result of the benefits provided to the community, and the amazing youth involved in these youth justice programs - regardless of their involuntary or voluntary participation. Adults remain involved in these programs for many years as a volunteer, and they often speak to the considerable benefits these programs provide to the community, as the primary reason behind their long affiliation. We believe the adults remain involved for the same reason as the youth - they both experience making a difference.
In 1993, there were approximately 78 of these programs in about a dozen states. It is estimated that approximately 8,650 juveniles were sentenced in these local programs back in 1993. In 2011, there are now approximately 1,264 of these programs in 48 states and Washington, DC and about one hundred more in various stages of development. It is estimated that a staggering 111,868 juvenile were sentenced in these 1,264 local programs based on research and data compiled by George Washington University. This represents an increase of approximately 1,300% in the number of juveniles who now proceed in these local programs during a one year period. As of January 1, 2012 - there are now 1,407 local Teen Court, Youth Court and Peer Court diversion programs around the world.
Youth and Adults Volunteer at Historic Levels for Juvenile Justice. It is estimated that approximately 8,225 youth volunteered as jurors, attorneys, and other roles in these local programs back in 1993. In 2012, it is estimated (based on scientific data collection) that a staggering 117,310 youth volunteered as jurors, attorneys, and other roles in these 1,407 local programs based on research and data compiled by George Washington University.
This represents an increase of approximately 1,400% in the number of youth who now volunteer in these local programs during a one year period. It is important to note that many of these youth volunteers are former juvenile offenders, who were sentenced in these programs, and even some juvenile offenders who are serving as jurors as part of their peer imposed mandated community service sentence – often at or near the end of their peer imposed sentence.
There are now programs in the United Kingdom, as a result of the first program beginning in England in 2007. Japan and South Korea both have documented programs that have now been established. Germany, Russia, France, and Canada are in various stages of developing and researching the establishment of a program. Australia established their first program in 2010.
Global Youth Justice, LLC is championing the proliferation of this remarkable juvenile justice program that is having a favorable impact on the lives of an ever increasing number of humans of all ages – albeit there is much work to still be undertaken to further the proliferation of these local programs all around the Globe. These programs are among the fastest growing and most replicated juvenile justice programs in the United States. By 2020, it is likely these programs will be even more prevalent around the world in one form or another - as these programs are very adaptable to local needs.
Scott Peterson’s Youth Justice Philosophy
"If negative peer pressure is a primary factor in leading some young people to commit a crime or an offense, then positive peer pressure can be harnessed and redirected to become a positive force and lead other young people to adhere to the rule of law and become more productive citizens. These youth justice programs harness positive peer pressure and utilize it in a peer judgment setting to adjust the anti-social, delinquent, and criminal behavior of young people. The peer judgment and positive peer pressure aspects of teen courts and youth courts are the two primary programmatic elements what separate these juvenile justice programs from all the others".
George Washington University Research Study
Quick Stats - 1 Year Period
Youth Volunteers * Youthful Offenders * Adult Volunteers
129,540 youthful offender referrals are made each year to these programs.
116,114 of the 129,540 youthful offender referrals made to these programs are accepted each year.
111,868 of the accepted 116,114 youthful offender referrals proceed each year in these programs.
97,578 of the 111,868 referrals that proceeded in these programs completed their peer imposed sentence.
1,925,596 hours of
mandated community service were completed by the 97,578 youthful offenders who
completed their peer imposes sentences.
96.6% of the 89.6% juvenile offenders referred proceeded in the program.
86.3% of the juvenile offenders that proceeded in the program completed their peer imposed sentence (This is a very respectable completion rate).
Volunteers: Youth and Adults
117,310 youth volunteered during a one year period for these programs.
16,522 adults volunteered during a one year period for these programs.
133,832 youth and adults volunteered in these programs.
Global Youth Justice Training Institutes
Global Youth Justice's 7th International Training Institute
Training Institute and Staff Retreat for Adult Staff and Key Adult Volunteers in existing local Teen Court, Youth Court, Peer Court, and/or Youth Peer Panel diversion programs. June 11-13, 2013 in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA.
Global Youth Justice's 8th International Training Institute
Establish, Enhance or Expand a local Teen Court, Youth Court, Peer Court, and/or Youth Peer Panel diversion program. December 3-5, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.
Watch -- Global Youth Justice YouTube Channel
Volunteer for Youth
Youth Justice Website