Lia Monahon

  • Hosted by Children's Law Center of Massachusetts, Inc.
  • Sponsored by McDermott Will & Emery
  • Service location Lynn
  • Law school Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law
  • Issue area Children/Youth, Criminal Justice Reform
  • Fellowship class year 2007
  • Program AmeriCorps Fellows Program, Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

I work for sentencing reform on behalf of Massachusetts youth. Despite their developmental immaturity and relative lack of resources, children in the U.S. are often punished no differently than adults. Children in Massachusetts face uniquely punitive statutes: those 14 and older charged with murders are automatically tried as adults. Conviction means a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole (LWOP). With 2,381 people serving LWOP for crimes committed before they turned 18, the U.S. stands alone in imposing the sentence on youth.

The Inspiration

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Stephen Reba

Host: The Barton Juvenile Defender Clinic of the Emory University School of Law

Sponsor: FordHarrison LLP

Alicia Virani

Host: California Conference for Equality and Justice

Sponsor: Bingham McCutchen LLP

Michael Pope

Host: Youth Represent

Sponsor: The Morrison & Foerster Foundation

Katherine Elise Walker

Host: National Center for Youth Law

Sponsor: Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP