EMI GA Network General Meeting
Cradle Justice: Breaking the Preschool to Prison Pipeline by Starting at the Beginning

August 28, 2023 General Meeting

Elevating Youth Justice: Starting at the Beginning
In our advocacy for youth and criminal justice reform, we must recognize the importance of providing supportive resources at the beginning of a child's life in order to interrupt future justice system involvement. We break the generational cycle by caring about and for the next generations.

Why these programs matter
An Ounce of Prevention Is Most Cost-Effective in Long Run -- Education costs less than ignorance, preventive health care far less than emergency rooms, preventive family services less than out-of-home care, and Head Start much less than prisons. (Children's Defense Fund)

Children with disabilities made up 13% of Head Start cumulative enrollment. Children with disabilities are those who have special plans under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). In comparison, about 4% of infants and toddlers and 7% of preschool-age children across the U.S. had identified disabilities in 2019. Head Start serves a greater proportion of children with disabilities than found in the overall population. (Head Start Program Facts: Fiscal Year 2021)

Babies Can’t Wait (BCW) is Georgia’s early intervention program that offers a variety of coordinated services for infants and toddlers with special needs, from birth to three years of age, and their families. -- "...[S]tudents with disabilities who are eligible for IDEA represent 25% of students arrested and referred to law enforcement, even though they only represent 12% of the overall student population." (jjie.org)

Guest presenters:
Juanita Yancey, Executive Director, Georgia Head Start Association and
Stefanie Clardy, Babies Can’t Wait, Georgia Department of Public Health

These early childhood programs are critical to the well-being of our children and to the development of their future potential. Access is particularly important for our children who grow up in historically marginalized and economically vulnerable communities.

Video Link

Presenters' materials are shared in the link below


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EMI GA Network Slides

Access slides from the August 28th EMI Georgia Network general meeting.