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Headshot of Jaden Zwick

Jaden Zwick

  • Hosted by The Collective for Liberatory Lawyering
  • Sponsored by Equal Justice Works Text-to-Give
  • Service location Los Angeles, California
  • Law school University of California, Los Angeles School of Law
  • Issue area Criminal Justice Reform, Education/Special Education
  • Fellowship class year 2023
  • Program Design-Your-Own Fellowship

The Project

Jaden (she/her/hers) supports community-led development of an alternative to juvenile court case adjudication and the establishment of a youth-led education defense network.

Out of nearly 20,000 youth in California placed on probation in 2019, 87% were Black or Latinx. Students of color are always less likely to receive diversion and more likely to remain on probation longer than their white peers. These racial disparities are unambiguously connected to a status quo of racism in schools, from inequitable resource distribution to bias in discipline. The school-to-prison pipeline and the criminal legal system stack the odds against students who are already at a disadvantage. Young people need support, not discipline, in order to achieve their potential both in and out of school.

Fellowship Plans

During Jaden’s Fellowship, she will contribute to the realization of a Los Angeles free from constant juvenile probation surveillance. She will provide policy and legal research to community partners who are building juvenile court alternatives. Jaden will also empower system-impacted young people to defend education access of other young people through the development of a peer advocacy program. Additionally, she will document, investigate, and litigate the harms of LA’s School-Based Probation department.

Jaden is motivated by her commitment to ending violence against youth in schools and improving the quality of education for Black students. She is dedicated to transformative approaches to addressing anti-Black racism in schools and beyond.

I went to law school to serve communities like mine in a movement lawyering capacity. Now, I’m living that dream and changing the way that low-income young people of color navigate historically harmful structures by building a better one.

Jaden Zwick /
2023 Equal Justice Works Fellow

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