Washington, DC Congressional Briefing
On November 28, 2007, RCYA research teams from each of the five sites across the country traveled to Washington D.C. to present the Youth Bill of Rights to Congressional staff members on Capitol Hill. The briefing, sponsored by Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ), outlined the social, civic and legal entitlements young people have identified as necessary for productive civic engagement as well as recommendations for incorporating youth voice into designing effective public policy. Immediately following the briefing, youth researchers engaged in face-to-face dialogue with attendees to further discuss the implications for and the ways in which youth voice could play a prominent role in policymaking.
The next day, each of the teams presented their research findings at the American Anthropological Association Meetings on a panel entitled, Youth Researching Youth Rights: Participatory Action Research as a Means, End, and Beginning for Civic Empowerment among Disenfranchised Youth. Topics included the politics of
public education, youth rights and education, youth-led community centers, the effects of school closures, and student-led evaluations of schools.
Haley Farm Research Convening
In April of 2007, the Research Collaborative on Youth Activism held a research convening at the Alex Haley Farm in Tennessee. We brought together thirty-five youth researchers and adult allies including school administrators, university researchers, and youth development practitioners from Brooklyn; Tucson; Los Angeles; Berkley, CA; Denver; New York; Oakland, CA; and Chicago.
The youth research teams shared their findings and recommendations on work addressing the following questions:
The State of Youth in Your Community
What are the social and economic conditions that shape possibilities and opportunities for young people in your community?
How do state institutions (city governments, schools, police, etc) support or impede the progress and healthy development of young people in your communities?
What are the forces (social, economic, and political) that foster or suppress the agency of young people and their families?
Youth Activism in Your Community
How do young people address the social and economic conditions that limit their possibilities and opportunities?
What are the organizations or processes that empower young people to become agents of community change?
Youth Rights in Your Community
What rights would youth need to help them address oppressive social and economic conditions?
What rights should state institutions extend to youth that would promote their participation in community development?
What are the rights necessary for young people to become active citizens in their communities and society?
The research teams shared findings regarding major challenges facing youth, which include school policies, social disinvestment in low-income communities, disenfranchisement of youth and criminalization of youth.
The collective findings of these research reports are synthesized in the RCYA Report on the Youth Bill of Rights.
There are no upcoming events.