July 19, 2013
A series of meetings is getting people talking about the racial disparity in the juvenile justice system.
A task force, created by the Charlottesville City Council, did a study on how race plays a part in the justice system.
Thursday night dozens of people came out to the Westhaven Community Center to express their feelings on how race affects the fairness of the justice system.
These meetings are in response to a study, done by the task force, which found African American youths are in juvenile detention centers longer than white offends who committed the same crime.
While the meeting got a little heated at times, organizers say they were able to get some important information out of the people who attended.
"Folks are concerned about the laws themselves, whether there is racism both real and perceived," says Mike Murphy, director of human services in the city of Charlottesville. "I think people want to come together in the community and act as advocates for the young people."
The next meeting will be held next Thursday at the South First Street Community Center. All are welcome to attend.