Sending Office: Honorable Val Butler Demings
Support STEAM Mentoring in Juvenile Delinquency Prevention
Current Co-Signers: Demings, Barragán, Blumenauer, Butterfield, Cohen, Danny Davis, Hastings, Jackson Lee, Lujan Grisham, Norton, David Scott, Frederica Wilson
DEADLINE: COB TODAY
Please join me in sending the attached letter to the Chair and Ranking Member of the CJS Appropriations Subcommittee, requesting that, of the total Fiscal Year 2019 funding for juvenile justice programs, the Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice
Prevention Programs (OJJPP) be required to use at least $4 million for a competitively-awarded, multi-state demonstration project that combines youth mentoring with interactive activities related to Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM)
One-on-one mentoring programs are a tested and proven prevention and intervention strategy for aiding youth who are at risk of educational failure, dropping out of school, or involvement in delinquent activities. Additionally, studies have shown children
who engage in scientific activities at an early age develop positive attitudes toward science, and are more likely to pursue Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM) expertise and careers.
Within overall funding for Juvenile Justice programs in Fiscal Year 2017, Congress provided $14.5 million specifically for demonstration programs and technical assistance to carry them out. Congress has routinely identified specific activities or populations
for OJJPP to prioritize in its development of demonstration projects in a given year.
I invite all my colleagues to join me in requesting that the Appropriations Committee include funding for OJJPP to specifically conduct a STEAM mentoring juvenile delinquency prevention demonstration program in Fiscal Year 2019. If you have any questions
or would like to sign on, please contact Chris Wilcox at firstname.lastname@example.org or 5-2176.
VAL BUTLER DEMINGS
Member of Congress
==TEXT OF LETTER==
Dear Chairman Culberson and Ranking Member Serrano:
We respectfully request that, of the total funding included in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations Act for juvenile justice programs, that you require the Department of Justice to utilize no less than $4,000,0000 for a
competitively-awarded, multi-state demonstration project that combines youth mentoring with interactive activities related to Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM) fields.
Technology, automation, and other changes to our economy are impacting the nature of our workforce. If the United States is to remain competitive in the world of technological innovation, we must do everything in our power to prepare students to pursue careers
in STEAM fields, including individuals from underrepresented minority segments of our population. Improving outcomes for disadvantaged youth requires more than simply expanding opportunities at school, because the challenges they face often extend beyond
the schoolhouse door.
Across the nation, youth participating in mentoring programs show improvements in their perception of social support and acceptance, their family relationships and a decrease in anti-social behaviors. Youth that meet regularly with their mentors are 46 percent
less likely to start using illegal drugs, and youth that face opportunity gaps, but have a mentor are 55 percent more likely to go to college. At the same time, children who engage in scientific activities at an early age develop positive attitudes toward
science, and are more likely to pursue STEAM expertise and careers.
Directing DOJ to develop an evidence-based, scalable mentoring program to prevent or reduce juvenile delinquency, while also exposing children to science, technology, engineering, the arts or mathematics will be key to improving outcomes for at-risk youth
by increasing their knowledge and understanding of the opportunities of careers in STEAM fields. We are hopeful that you will include specific funding for such a juvenile justice pilot program in your Subcommittee’s FY 2019 bill.
e-Dear Colleague version 2.0