The Center for Children & Youth Justice will recognize The Seattle Times and reporter Sara Jean Green with the sixth annual Norm Maleng Advocate for Youth Award, to be presented at a breakfast fundraiser for the Center at 7 a.m. on Thursday, March 21, at the Sheraton Seattle Hotel.
The newspaper and Green earn the award in recognition of their efforts to raise awareness of child welfare, juvenile justice and child sex-trafficking.
"The Seattle Times has gone above and beyond its responsibility to report on current events by editorializing successfully to bring about real change and improvement in the systems set up to protect vulnerable children and youth," said retired Washington Supreme Court Justice Bobbe Bridge, founding president and CEO of the Center for Children & Youth Justice.
Justice Bridge heralded the Times' multiple editorials supporting laws and policies to protect young women and men from being exploited and forced into prostitution by ruthless and manipulative pimps. Times editorials also have advocated for a new juvenile justice center in King County, for improved protections for children in the foster care system and for stronger provisions to rehabilitate juvenile offenders.
"Sara Jean Green also deserves special recognition for her in-depth reporting on child sex-trafficking, dispelling myths and stereotypes to educate our community about the victimization of young women and men forced into prostitution," Justice Bridge added.
The Center focuses its own efforts to protect youth from sex-trafficking in Project Respect, a first-in-the-nation initiative addressing the systemic and societal victimization of children who are sexually exploited for the financial gain of others. Project Respect developed a protocol that establishes ideal practices for rescuing and rehabilitating these victimized youth. CCYJ is currently working with local jurisdictions to help the group adapt and implement the protocol.
Also at the event, former state Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson will receive the President's Award in honor of her long years of advocacy and leadership in juvenile justice and children's mental health.
Named in honor of the late King County prosecuting attorney, the Norm Maleng Advocate for Youth Award recognizes those who show exemplary leadership, dedication and commitment to the youth and families of Washington. Previous recipients include Seattle Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll, the Maleng family, Perkins Coie LLP, Anne Ramsay-Jenkins of the College Success Foundation, and Jim Mallahan.
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