The Youth Mock Trial Program (YMT) was developed by CJP summer 2002 interns, with the goal of promoting youth's understanding of and interest in the legal system. YMT is a month-long program that offers interactive, discussion-oriented activities; CJP interns and staff dialogue participants' questions, concerns and ideas about the legal system, and teach them about their rights and responsibilities as citizens. While learning about the legal system and legal professions, YMT participants prepare a mock trial. Participants are asked to develop arguments for both the prosecution and defense, and to role-play their respective roles.
In November and December 2002, twenty-two youth from the Harlem Children's Zone's (www.hcz.org) Booker T. Washington Center participated in YMT. CJP greatly appreciates the participants' and the Harlem Children Zone's hard work and commitment to the program.
On December 13, 2002, the program culminated with the youths' presentation of their mock trial to Civil Court Justice Marilyn Shafer of 80 Centre Street. Justice Shafer and her staff generously gave their time and attention to the YMT participants, who did an excellent job presenting the trial.