STATEMENT BY CONGRESSMAN WM. LACY CLAY (D) MISSOURI REGARDING THE CONSENT DECREE REACHED BETWEEN THE ST. LOUIS COUNTY FAMILY COURT AND THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE TO CORRECT MULTIPLE CONSITUTIONAL VIOLATIONS OF THE RIGHTS OF JUVENILES
“Today’s agreement by the St. Louis County Family Court to enter into a consent decree with the U.S. Department of Justice is a victory for the constitution and for the juveniles who will encounter the justice system and finally enjoy equal protection under the law…which should include an opportunity to make a fresh start.
For more than two years, I have been pressing the St. Louis County Family Court to urgently address and correct the horrendous, multiple constitutional violations of the rights of juveniles, many of whom were African American, as revealed by the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division report released in August of 2015.
I want to commend both the judges of the St. Louis County Family Court and the tireless staff of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division for reaching this transformative and long-overdue agreement.
When fully and faithfully implemented, this consent decree will truly represent a new beginning for juvenile justice in St. Louis County.”