Rev. Michael Anderson of the New Jerusalem Baptist Church is continuing to promote civil citations for juveniles who have been arrested for non-serious offenses. He is a leader with BOLD Justice, an organization that promotes better treatment for people who are facing significant disadvantages. He wants civil citations to be implemented throughout Florida.
“We as a state must turn a page and use civil citations with young people who have been arrested for non-serious offenses,” said Anderson.
He and a growing number of community leaders are concerned that too many young who are arrested for minor, often very minor offenses face ruined lives because an arrest follows them for the rest of their lives. With a civil citation, young people complete a program which involves community service and education designed to prevent them for pursing a life of crime. The offense does not become part of their permanent record and they can pursue their educations and careers.
They have a powerful supporter. New Florida Senate President Joe Negron, a Republican from Stuart wants to see reforms with the juvenile justice system so that young people can begin their adult lives without a criminal record.