Juvenile Justice Exchange Nears

In September, Dui Hua will hold the 2012 Juvenile Justice Expert Exchange with China’s Supreme People’s Court (SPC) in California. In preparation for the event, Dui Hua toured several Bay Area juvenile facilities; hosted a dinner for US friends, supporters, and partners; met with participating SPC judges in Beijing; and spoke about the exchange in Hong Kong.

Senior Manager of Development & Programs Daisy Yau visited Camp Glenwood, a residential detention facility that provides “high-risk” youth with an alternative to incarceration. During its six-month program, Camp Glenwood teaches vocational skills, fosters community living and interpersonal relationships, and helps residents prepare for job interviews and continuing education. In June, Yau also met with officials involved in the upcoming exchange from the San Mateo Probation Department, Private Defender Program, District Attorney’s Office, and Juvenile Mediation Program.

On July 19, Dui Hua hosted about 90 friends and supporters at the Juvenile Justice Initiative Dinner. In attendance were judges, officials, and academics from San Mateo and San Francisco counties. Guests were briefed on the current state of US juvenile justice by San Mateo Juvenile Judge Elizabeth Lee, who is taking a lead role in organizing a two-and-a-half day program for the exchange. Executive Director John Kamm gave a keynote address Dui Hua’s previous Juvenile Justice Expert Exchanges, in 2008 and 2010, and emphasized the importance of the 2012 exchange in guiding implementation of the section on juvenile crime in China’s recently passed Criminal Procedure Law. Dui Hua Director Bill Simon made remarks about the successes Dui Hua has realized in its 13 years of operation.

Juvenile Justice Initiative Dinner (top, clockwise): Dui Hua Program & Research Intern Bret Newman speaks with Denise Coleman, director of juvenile justice programs at Huckleberry Youth Programs in San Francisco and a US participant to the exchange. Juvenile Judge Elizabeth Lee, a US participant to the exchange, discusses US juvenile justice. Director Bill Simon welcomes guests.

In August, Kamm made a two-week trip to Beijing and Hong Kong to meet Chinese and foreign stakeholders. At a meeting with the Supreme People’s Court, he finalized the details of the upcoming juvenile justice exchange. The following week, Kamm spoke at the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong about the importance of juvenile justice reform and the need for international partnerships to improve human rights.

Trips Reinforce Core Initiatives

In June, Kamm traveled to Washington DC, New York, New Jersey, and Boston. In Washington DC, Kamm met with Assistant Secretary of State Michael Posner, who led the US delegation to the US-China Human Rights Dialogue on July 23 and 24. Kamm requested that a number of cases of concern be addressed during the dialogue, including those of American citizens Xue Feng (薛锋) and Hu Zhicheng (胡志成). In New York, Kamm met with Chinese Ambassador Li Baodong for a wide-ranging discussion on US-China relations and China’s positions on a number of international issues. In New Jersey, Kamm participated in the 2012 Alumni-Faculty Forum at Princeton University where he paneled an event titled, “Is China Prepared for World Leadership?”

Work on women in prison was advanced with trips to the US and Chinese capitals. In DC, Kamm met with Counselor Sun Jin of the Chinese Embassy about the possibility of partnering with a Chinese university to host a seminar on the United Nations Rules for the Treatment of Women Prisoners and Non-Custodial Measures for Women Offenders (the Bangkok Rules). In Beijing, Kamm entered preliminary discussions with a Chinese university to jointly host the seminar in order to promote implementation of the rules that cater to the world’s fastest growing prisoner population: women.

June Fourth Prisoners Remain

Dui Hua researchers spent two weeks at Harvard University’s Yenching Library looking for information on prisoners.

Research Officer Luke Wong and Program & Research Intern Bret Newman joined Kamm at Harvard University’s Yenching Library to search Chinese court yearbooks for the names of political prisoners and information on juvenile justice, women in prison, and capital punishment. Spending nearly two weeks at the library, Dui Hua uncovered dozens of cases to add to its Political Prisoner Database and found an official account of the number of people convicted for joining the June Fourth protests, largely peaceful protests that spread across China in the spring of 1989. On May 31, Dui Hua estimated that, 23 years on, fewer than a dozen people are still in prison for their involvement in the protests.