Who We Are

We defend the right of Louisiana's most vulnerable children to fairness, dignity, and opportunity.

Our Team

We are a nonprofit law office that defends young people in Louisiana’s juvenile justice system through both direct representation and policy advocacy.  We fight for children in the courtroom, at City Hall, and in the state legislature.

We know that children thrive when they are supported in their own homes and communities. So we advocate for state and local policies that reduce the number of children in the justice system and provide better alternatives to arrest and incarceration. For the kids who do enter the system, we support policies that keep them safe, protect their rights, and get them home as soon as possible.

As the juvenile public defender in New Orleans, we represent the majority of children in the city who come into contact with the justice system. We provide each child with a holistic team – a lawyer, social worker, investigator, and advocate – to address both the causes and consequences of an arrest. We make sure children have the supports they need to access education, mental health care, and job opportunities so they can put the system behind them for good.

We work for children’s rights every day because when kids thrive, so do our families, our communities, and our state.

Mission

We defend the right of every Louisiana child to fairness, dignity, and opportunity.  Our holistic defense helps young people achieve their legal and life goals.  We advocate and litigate for a transformed juvenile justice system that is fair, compassionate, and promotes positive youth development.  And our leadership and partnerships strengthen communities and expand opportunities for all children.

Vision

We envision a Louisiana where all young people are empowered to thrive in their own homes and communities; a fair and compassionate juvenile justice system that promotes positive youth development and protects the rights and dignity of every young person; and a statewide community of skilled, committed, and fully-resourced advocates for children.

Values

  • Empowerment.  We believe that all young people have equal rights, dignity, worth, and humanity. We ensure that their voices are heard on issues that affect them.
  • Loyalty.  We stand up for our clients, advocating for their expressed goals and interests. We stand with our colleagues, allies, and partners to defend young people.
  • Resilience.  We champion children with zeal that is inspired by the courage, perseverance, and resilience that we find in our clients and their families.  We work with diligence and dedication.
  • Creativity.  We use innovative methods to accomplish our goals and the goals of the young people whom we serve. We work in cross-disciplinary teams and with a wide variety of partners to accomplish our mission.