Governor Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday appointed a 16-member commission to provide “concrete, actionable recommendations” on juvenile justice, with the aim of raising the age of criminal responsibility.
New York remains one of two states—North Carolina is the other—which treats 16- and 17-year-old offenders as adults. Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman has advocated increasing the age of criminal responsibility for less serious offenses, an idea Cuomo endorsed in his State of the State address in January.
Cuomo said the new Commission on Youth, Public Safety & Justice is tasked with coming up with recommendations this calendar year.
Co-chairing the committee are Jeremy Creelan, a partner at Jenner & Block and a former special counsel to Cuomo and deputy director of the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice; and Soffiyah Elijah, executive director of the Correctional Association of New York and former director and supervising attorney of the Defender Clinic at the City University of New York School of Law.
The other members include civil rights attorney Juan Cartagena, president and general counsel to Latino Justice PRLDEF; Joel Copperman, president and CEO of CASES; Westchester County District Attorney and former judge Janet DiFiore; Elizabeth Glazer, director of the New York City Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice and former state deputy secretary for public safety.
Michael Hardy, executive vice president and general counsel at the National Action Network; Melanie Hartzog, executive director of the Children’s Defense Fund-New York; philanthropist Emily Tow Jackson, executive director of The Tow Foundation; Supreme Court Justice Barry Kamins, chief of policy and planning with the Office of Court Administration; Albany Police Chief Steven Krokoff; Schenectady County Probation Director Joseph Mancini; Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente; Madison County Sheriff Allen Riley; Elaine Spaull, a member of the Rochester City Council, executive director of the Center for Youth and former tax lawyer with Nixon Peabody; and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr.