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Background Info: We are youth leaders who are members of the Global Kids Human Rights Activist Project, at South Shore High School in Brooklyn, NY. The purpose of this petition is to discuss the issues and problems concerning the Gang Abatement and Prevention Act of 2007(S. 456) which was proposed by NY Senator Charles Schumer. The Gang Abatement and Prevention Act of 2007 is a bill that was proposed to deal with the problem of gang activities in New York by imposing harsher penalties on people who commit gang related crimes. There are many aspects of this bill which we find are unfair. For instance, the fact that the Act would make it easier to treat 16 year olds as adults in court if they are convicted of gang related crimes. People who commit two gang crimes would receive up to 30 years in prison. Non-Gang members who are found guilty of helping gang members can also receive up to 30 years in jail. We feel that this bill comes down hard on the younger generation and denies us the opportunity to grow into upstanding citizens. This bill does not address the reasons young people join gangs in the first place or their ability to change. In addition we fear that these laws will, in practice, unfairly target and further stigmatize youth of color. Please sign below and urge NY Sen. Schumer and the Senate Judiciary Committee to: - Provide for more rehabilitation and gang prevention programs. - Reduce the sentences imposed on youth. - Not charge and try children as adults in court.


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