Click on the arc of themoral universe to see15 to Life’s impact.
Click on the arc of the moral universe to seethe impact of 15 to Life.
In his book Body Count, Princeton Prof John Dilulio warns of a coming wave of child super-predators.The false prediction, repeated by media across the country, lead to the transfer of hundreds ofthousands of children into the adult court system to face extreme punishments.
49 states passed laws making it easier to put kids in adult court and prison.
"America is now home tothickening ranks of juvenile‘super-predators’…willing to maim,rape and kill withouta moment’s thought."John Dilulio
"America is now home tothickening ranks of juvenile'super-predators'--radically impulsive,brutally remorseless youngsters."
"They are not somecreature from outer space;they are our own children."
"Amoral, feral beings,stone-cold killers,willing to maim, rape andkill without a moment's thought."
"The tsunami is coming...Juvenile crime is going upand getting worse."
Three U.S. Supreme Court decisions - Roper, Graham and Miller - all state that "children aredifferent", and put limits on the punishment of juveniles. Listen to the chief justices below.
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The U.S. Supreme Court decisions give hope to 2,500 children sentenced to life without parole – and tens of thousands more facing lengthy sentences.
15 to Life community screenings launch with broadcast partner PBS.
The film becomes the most popular request of POV’s 27th season.
"15 to Life puts a human face on the injustices and complicated issues in the criminal justice system. When teachers, community organizers and policy-makers ask for a film on criminal justice that students and community members can relate to, this is always at the top of our list."
- Eliza Licht, POV VP of community outreach and education
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After three years of failed attempts, Florida revises its sentencing laws for children. Watch the video to see how the new law would have impacted Kenneth’s resentencing.
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"I receive emails daily from viewers of 15 to Life who have been transformed and want to help
Kenneth and other children who received extreme sentences. 15 to Life was instrumental in creating a statewide
discussion on how we should treat our children in the criminal justice system and helped create the atmosphere
for the passage of this major Legislation." - Paolo Annino, Kenneth Young’s lawyer
MSNBC host Melissa Harris Perry interviews filmmaker Nadine Pequeneza and helps spread the word about juvenile life without parole.
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POV broadcast reaches 1.2 million viewers across the United States.
"Harrowing...Depicts a justice systemthat only perpetuates the sort of violenceit was intended to keep in check."
"The most chilling documentaryI’ve seen in a long time...Worth every minute... I have been moved,and I’m going to start moving some people."
The Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youthfacilitates a screening of 15 to Life for 140 youths,emerging leaders in juvenile justice reform.
15 to Life film screening at the CJJ/OJJDP Youth Summit evoked tears, questions and a sense of urgency to address the laws which ignore children’s unique capacity for positive change. During the open discussion youth spoke about cultural competence in the court room, children’s under-developed brains, trauma-informed consequences, socio-economic inequality and many other relevant topics they felt were important in relation to the treatment of children in the U.S. justice system."
- Xavier McElrath-Bey, Youth Summit facilitator
Eighty Baltimoreans join a screening and discussion with former juvenile lifers.Kareem Hassan sentenced to life as a child joined our panel.
"15 to Life solidified resolve of the Baltimore City elected delegation to introduce and champion legislation to reform the extreme sentencing of children in Maryland. While the bill did not pass, it was debated fiercly on the Senate Floor and had signficant support in the House. We believe the bill will pass in 2016."
- James Dold, Advocacy Director The Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth
Communities and Relatives of Illinois Incarcerated Children host a screening in Chicagoto help families prepare for their child's resentencing.
15 to Life opens the MacArthur Foundation's Models for Changeconference in Washington, D.C.
"This presentationset the tone for the conference."
"It was very informative and really impactedthe way I perceive injustices withinthe legal system for youth."
"Powerful filmthat shouldchange publicunderstanding ofthis issue."
"I am trying to get a copy to use for education purposes with staff in my office."
"This was a valuable opportunity to get the film in front of judges, legislators and state attourneys from across the country - key actors in the justice system who are essential to engage in reform."
- Nadine Pequeneza, filmmaker
Screenings of 15 to Life proceed Nevada’s unanimous votes in the house and senate to ban juvenile life without parole.
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15 to Life screenings, in both Reno and Las Vegas, were critical in providing a relatable framework for our bill to end juvenile life without parole. The community response was incredible, with everyone from legislators to affected communities turning out for the film, which in both locations was followed by an interactive panel discussion. What’s more, the attendees went to the next level in their political activism for the bill, writing letters and speaking with their representatives.
15 to Life was an essential component of our campaign plan!"
- Vanessa Spinazola, ACLUS Legislative Director in Nevada
Barry Massey, the youngest juvenile sentenced to life, becomes the first to be paroled in Seattle. Earlier the same year 15 to Life opened Seattle’s Social Justice Film Festival.
15 to Life is honored at the American Bar Association's Silver Gavel Awards for its ability to engage citizens in a fundamental argument for children’s rights.
"15 to Life: Kenneth’s Story is a fascinating, informative and, at times, gut-wrenching documentary...[it] puts a human face on the real impact of a Supreme Court decision and abstract debates about fair sentencing.”
- ABA Standing Committee on Gavel Awards
15 to Life screens on Capitol Hill. The same day Congressman Tony Cardenas introduces a resolution to ban juvenile life without parole at the Federal level.
Juvenile lifers at Graterford Prison in Pennsylvania incorporate 15 to Life into their reentry workshop, and write Kenneth letters of thanks.
Viewers touched by Kenneth's story create a trust fundto help him transition back to society when he is released.
The trust fund’s settlor, Erica Zweig, intros 15 to Life at a fundraiser in San Francisco.
15 to Life continues to be used in the campaign to end juvenile life without parole. To use the film in your community contact: Outcast Films.
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley poses with members of
ICAN, formerly incarcerated youth advocating for youth justice reform. Grassley led months of negotiations to craft the bipartisan Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act, which includes a provision to ban jlwop in the federal system and give juvenile offenders a chance at parole after serving 20 years of their sentence.