Who We Are

#DebtFreeJustice is a national campaign dedicated to ending the harmful and unjust fees and fines imposed on youth in the justice system and their families.

We are the leading voice for the abolition of this harmful practice. Although national attention has centered on fees and fines in the adult system, only recently have more jurisdictions begun to challenge the issue as it impacts youth and families. 

What We Do

We are working to end juvenile fees and fines by supporting community-driven efforts at the local, state, and federal levels through policy advocacy, litigation, and research.

Our Current Campaigns

In 2021, we supported legislative efforts in 15 states:


“We gained an understanding of how harmful juvenile court debt can be to families and that it can actually be a barrier to treatment and rehabilitation.”

—Macomb County, Michigan, Circuit Court Judge James Biernat Jr., whose court in 2021 eliminated juvenile fees

Our Steering Committee

Berkeley logo


NYCL logo


Juvenile Law Center logo


Arnold Ventures logo


Schusterman logo