New legislation aimed at protecting youth's right to stay silent
The Legal Aid Society hosted a youth justice rally on Wednesday at St. Mary’s Park in Mott Haven urging New Yorkers to get on board with the ‘Right To Remain Silent’ Act.
The proposed bill would ensure teens and young adults have the opportunity to speak to a lawyer before being questioned by law enforcement.
Another proposed bill addressed at today’s rally was the Youth Justice and Opportunities Act, which would “provide a developmentally appropriate response to young New Yorkers entangled in the criminal legal system,” according to The Legal Aid Society.
If passed, this legislation would allow judges to waive fees and surcharges for adults ages 18 to 25, who are involved in a criminal legal justice matter.
“If you’re rich, and your child is brought to the police station, you call a lawyer right away. Send them over, to demote your childs right to remain silent,” said Theresa Moser, who is a staff attorney at the Legal Aid Society.
“But, if a parent doesn’t have an ability to call lawyer there is nobody there for that young person.” Moser said.