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Project Youth Court (PYC), a 501 c3 organization founded in 2014, manages a year round Youth Court in New Haven- the only youth court in Connecticut. Youth Court engages a youth's peers to repair the harm caused by a youth's actions and gives them a second chance to build a stronger community. The mission is to introduce area youth to and engage them in activities and services that promote feelings of self-esteem and self-emprovement as they develop healthy attitudes towards authority and an understanding of Restorative Justice.
PYC is an alternative disposition for youth who commit misdeameanor crimes which is based on the philosophy that youth are less likely to re-offend when a peer jury consists of student volunteers, as well as clients serving jury duty, help determine their restorative contract. Clients need to admit responsibility in the incident to be referred. Student volunteers, trained by local judges, attorneys, and Youth Court staff, serve in the courtroom as attorneys, clerks, baliffs, and jurors. Our clients receive a restorative contract from a jury of their peers based on guidelines established by our case manager. Upon successful completion of the restorative contract, the charge will be dropped.