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Natalie Hollabaugh Johnstone

  • Hosted by Criminal Justice Reform Clinic at Lewis & Clark Law School
  • Sponsored by Intel Corporation, Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP
  • Service location Portland, Oregon
  • Law school Lewis & Clark Law School
  • Issue area Children/Youth, Criminal Justice Reform
  • Fellowship class year 2021
  • Program Design-Your-Own Fellowship

The Project

Natalie (she/her/hers) reduces youth entanglement in the criminal justice system by providing tools for self-advocacy, empowering system-involved youth, and ensuring pro bono access to reduce barriers.

Natalie’s project fills gaps in the juvenile justice legal services and resource network in Oregon and creates ongoing supports to benefit youth. Identified by youth who have interacted with the criminal justice system and a recent National Juvenile Defender Center report, these gaps make youth, particularly BIPOC youth, especially vulnerable to more severe consequences resulting from juvenile convictions. The project will reach into Oregon’s 197 school districts, out to the 500 youth incarcerated in Oregon, and to hundreds       of acutely impacted youth facing collateral consequences statewide to improve outcomes and provide much needed legal support.

Fellowship Highlights to Date

In the first year of the Fellowship, Natalie has:

  • Provided representation to seven youth originally convicted in adult court in their resentencing hearings, which led to the first youth in Oregon resentenced as a youth on an expungeable offense and the first youths resentenced to immediate release
  • Partnered with Youth, Rights & Justice to expand the Record Relief Juvenile Expunction Clinic Statewide, offering services to youth across Oregon, currently having reached over 50 youth and having held numerous clinics at high schools and service organizations
  • Secured expungement in every contested hearing to date
  • Researched, developed, and drafted a Collateral Consequences Guide for adjudicated youth in Oregon alongside Metropolitan Public Defender and Youth, Rights & Justice to be published by The Gault Center in the fall of 2022
  • Collaborated with eight other organizations to expand the reach and impact of the project

Next Steps

In the next year, Natalie plans to:

  • Continue providing representation to youth in expunction hearings, youth sentenced in adult court in resentencing hearings, and youth reentering the community and encountering barriers
  • Conduct ongoing in person and virtual expunction clinics across Oregon, particularly in areas with unmet need
  • Continue to develop and test a Know Your Rights App with youth focus group coalition members
  • Develop pro bono support network and resource guide for youth across Oregon

I have witnessed the school-to-prison pipeline from nearly every angle as a teenager myself, a public school educator, and now as a law student gaining clinical experience working with youth who are incarcerated. I am passionate about ensuring youth don’t interact with the system and, for those that do, making sure it does not impact the rest of their life.

Natalie Hollabaugh /
2021 Equal Justice Works Fellow

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