Court Leader’s Advantage Video Podcast: March 2021 Episode

Brought to You in Cooperation with NACM

The Coronavirus has created a crisis in America’s jails and prisons. Many of these facilities have become COVID hotspots.  Although sometimes overlooked, the pandemic also poses an enormous risk for juveniles who are detained. It is surprising to learn that, according to the Annie E. Casey Foundation, there were actually more young people in detention in December of last year than in April when the pandemic was new.  And a greater proportion of those young people were Black and Latino.

To investigate this alarming situation, Drexel University and the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges have come together in a new project to 1) research juvenile risk assessment, risk reduction, and judicial decision-making during the pandemic; 2) develop a research-based plan to safely lower the numbers of young people confined in juvenile facilities; and 3) use that plan to motivate decision-makers to safely reduce the number of confinements, and therefore help manage the virus.

  • How can we benefit from the research these experts are conducting on judicial detention and placement decisions in the time of COVID?
  • How will this project change juvenile justice both during and after COVID?
  • What lessons have we learned and what advice do we have to share?

Watch the March 2021 CLAPodcast Episode 44 minutes 30 seconds

Listen to the March 2021 CLAPodcast Episode 42 minutes 27 seconds

Leave a comment or question about the episode at

About Our Panel

The Honorable Gayl Branum Carr is a Judge of the Fairfax Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court, Fairfax, VA. Judge Carr was appointed to the bench in 1994. Judge Carr is responsible for resolving matters involving child custody; visitation; paternity; and child/spousal support. Judge Carr also has jurisdiction over misdemeanor and felony cases involving both adults and juveniles. In addition, Judge Carr presides over child dependency cases and domestic violence petitions, criminal and civil.

Judge Carr was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. She received her Juris Doctor from the University of Richmond School of Law in 1987 and her Bachelor of Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1984. Prior to her appointment to the bench, Judge Carr served as Fairfax County Assistant County Attorney where she was responsible for prosecuting civil cases involving child dependency matters. Judge Carr also served as an Assistant Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Virginia, where she was responsible for civil litigation and representation in state and federal courts involving claims for money damages and civil rights litigation. Formerly, Judge Carr was engaged in the private practice of law including criminal defense; family law; employment law; juvenile justice and traffic offenses.

Judge Carr is actively involved in many local, state and national organizations. She is a Board Member of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges.  She previously served as President of the Virginia Council of Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court Judges and Secretary, National Association of Women Judges District 4 among other leadership positions she holds in the community. Judge Carr taught as an Adjunct Faculty member at George Mason University, Northern Virginia Community College and Strayer University.

Dr. Naomi Goldstein, Ph.D., is Professor of Psychology, Co-Director of the J.D./Ph.D. Program in Law and Psychology, and Director of the Juvenile Justice Research and Reform Lab at Drexel University. Dr. Goldstein collaborates with community stakeholders to use social science research to improve juvenile justice policy and practice. Her work centers on the role of adolescent development in legal settings, and the development, implementation, and evaluation of best practices in juvenile justice contexts. She currently focuses on cross-systems work to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline, reform juvenile probation systems, and reduce racial and ethnic disparities within the justice system.

Robert “Bob” Bermingham is Director, Court Services Unit | Fairfax County Juvenile & Domestic Relations District Court | Fairfax, Virginia.Bob began his career in juvenile justice in 1986 as childcare specialist in the Fairfax County Juvenile Detention Center. During the past 30 plus years Bob has served in many different capacities within the juvenile justice system in Fairfax County. He has worked in both community based residential programs and as a field probation officer. During his tenure Bob has held management positions with probation services, served as the County’s first Gang Prevention Coordinator and since 2009 has served as the Court Service Unit Director of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s largest Court Service Unit. Bob has led the 300-person unit through significant transformation in practices to include the re-design of juvenile intake services, the implementation of assessment tools at major decision points within the system, enhanced diversion alternatives, deployment of evidence-based interventions along with a focus on reducing racial and ethnic disparities and family engagement. Bob is dedicated to providing juvenile justice services that build on individual and family strengths to improve client outcomes while remaining focused on public safety and promoting equitable and effective justice.

Do You Want to Know More?

Juvenile Detention and Placement Decisions

OJJDP COVID 19 Guidance for States

March Court Leader’s Advantage Podcast Video Episode Time Marker Sheet

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