ARC, Inc. is hosting its 2021 “Steps Towards Justice" Hike-a-thon! Join us the weekend of May 22 and 23 by hitting a trail or any location of your choice and asking friends and family to support your activity. Participate on your own or with a group. For every half-mile (1,000 steps) you hike, you'll be raising support for ARC, Inc.’s juvenile justice efforts. At the end of the weekend, we'll be tallying up our total steps or miles to see how far we have come toward justice.
Those who cannot participate, but would still like to support the hike-a-thon can spread the word about the event and cheer hikers on by donating. Visit our Meet Our Hikers page for a list of participants to support.
How the Hike-a-Thon Benefits ARC, Inc.'s Juvenile Justice Efforts
Children in 26 states are subject to life without the possibility of parole (LWOP). An estimated 2,600 individuals are currently serving LWOP for crimes committed before age 18 and courts continue to impose new sentences every year. Mitigation is highly effective in changing this. Mitigation is the process of investigating and presenting a person’s full and accurate life history to convey their humanity to judges, juries, prosecutors, and parole boards. A client’s life often includes complex traumas due to systemic injustices, poverty, abuse, and other contributing factors. Knowing these details aids decision-makers in seeing a client’s humanity and arriving at just outcomes.
Pledges for the Steps Towards Justice Hike-a-Thon will help ARC, Inc. cover costs related to juvenile mitigation investigations such as obtaining key school, medical, employment, and other records for clients or local transportation to visit clients and key witnesses. It also supports ARC, Inc.'s Education and Training Program which provides free training to thousands of legal advocates and defenders who bring mitigation to juvenile cases across the country. Together, the efforts supported through the hike-a-thon help to ensure that individuals from underserved areas who are facing juvenile LWOP can obtain justice and a chance to successfully return to their communities.