There’s little that judges can do to rein in young people who run wild and talk back, but a new law could double the number of troubled teens stuck in the court of last resort.

Active Parenting

Her boyfriend beat her so badly she had to be hospitalized. Then the city took her kids because of it. Meet the mom who’s turning a legal fight into a source of inspiration for other two-time victims.

Classroom Adversaries

It’s been known as a training ground for activist attorneys since it was founded in 1983. Today, CUNY School of Law hosts a new struggle–pragmatism versus radicalism.

The Big Idea: Judgmental Healt

Everyone applauds the idea of treatment instead of jail. Will New York’s experiment with mental health courts follow drug courts’ success?


After 15 years as chief prosecutor in charge of juvenile delinquency cases in the city Law Department’s Family Court division, Peter Reinharz has said he will step down this month, leaving behind a legacy of favoring imprisonment for young offenders.

One-Way Ticket?

Disabled people would like to work, and a cost-conscious Congress wants them to, too. But for the mentally ill, the experimental Ticket to Work vouchers may well spell social insecurity.

Insanity Pleas

Kendra’s Law was supposed to make sure the mentally ill got help. In the hidden world of mental hygiene courts, that’s just what the doctor ordered.

Marcia's Law

For 30 years, attorney Marcia Lowry has waged war on bumbling child welfare systems. Yet though she has shown the world what’s wrong with foster care, Lowry’s the first to admit she has no idea how to fix it.

Directly to Jail

Despite promises for more appropriate lodgings, the city continues to detain teens who’ve committed minor offenses in prison-like facilities.