A child under 18 years old
A sentence of life in prison
No possibility of parole
Why is it important to abolish JLWOP for everyone, everywhere?
People deserve the chance to show that they have changed and developed.
Science has shown that the brain continues to mature until the mid-20s. As a result, young people cannot be held to the same standards of responsibility as adults.
JLWOP sentences violate Article 37 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which states that, “No child shall be subjected to torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”
People who once served JLWOP sentences are now making a difference in their communities as engaged citizens, volunteers, anti-violence activists, and advocates. Several members of the Restore Justice staff are former so-called “juvenile lifers.”
criminal legal system stories
Restore Justice is committed to sharing the stories of those impacted by the unjust laws in Illinois that we work to dismantle.
The issues around sentencing in illinois
In Illinois, there are a number of sentencing laws that together create a system that regularly results in extremely long prison terms.
Interested in our work?
Help us to change Illinois’ cruel sentencing laws and prison conditions and to create new pathways for release for people already incarcerated.