Sen. Cortese’s Juvenile Justice Diversion Bill is Signed

Today the Governor has signed SB 383 authored by Senator Dave Cortese (D-Silicon Valley) which will increase access to diversion programs for youth that commit non-violent felonies with an aim of shifting the focus of our justice system from incarceration to rehabilitation.

Signed into Law Today:

SB 383 – Juvenile Justice Diversion

Previously Signed into Law:

SB 564 - Santa Clara County Hospitals

SB 780 – Local Economic Development; Funding for Affordable Housing

SB 791 – California Surplus Land Unit

SCR 18 - Compassionate California

SB 411 - Rights for Retirees

SB 461 - Unfair Competition Law Enforcement

By implementing commonsense reforms, SB 383 will remove superfluous barriers in our justice system that are currently restricting diversion services for our youth. Every child deserves the opportunity to attain rehabilitation as an alternative to prolonged incarceration,” says Senator Cortese.

“SB 383 is an important measure that follows the science of adolescent brain development and grants additional judicial discretion for youth who commits a first time, non-violent offense,” said California Judges Association President Judge Tom Delaney. “The California Judges Association is the proud sponsor of this legislation and we appreciate Senator Cortese and his staff for all the hard work in getting the bill to the Governor’s desk. We hope the Governor will sign SB 383 into law later this month.”  

Numerous peer-reviewed studies point to diversion as a more effective tool in reducing recidivism than conventional judicial interventions.

It has also been shown that factors exist to continually deny youth of color early diversion opportunities with a Brennan Center for Justice 2020 report indicating that justice system involvement leads to “profoundly unequal treatment” and “long-term economic disparity”.

SB 383 will also remove the procedural barriers that exist today restricting diversion services for youth who commit a crime in a county that is not their county of residence.