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  7. Rensselaer County DA Invites...

As part of the District Attorney’s Office upcoming “Looking Forward…to Change” initiative, the District Attorney’s office is sponsoring a writing contest for youth. The contest is open to Rensselaer County students between the ages of 10-18 years old. Contestants must live and attend school in Rensselaer County and cannot be high school graduates.

District Attorney Donnelly explained the goal of the contest, stating, “Recent events in our nation have highlighted what is being classified as systemic racism in our criminal justice system. In order to understand this and to work toward meaningful change, we as a community need to listen to each other. I am asking students to identify their understanding of this problem, and to provide ideas for what we can do now to move the ball forward and to start building trust amongst residents, both with each other and with law enforcement.”

As part of the contest, students are asked to set forth their understanding of what the term “racism” means and to share ideas about how our community can combat racism.

Donnelly said, “The first step in healing our communities is to build relationships where we can communicate and educate one another as to each other’s perspective. I am hoping that the young people of Rensselaer County can set an example by sharing their stories.”

Prizes will be awarded in three age brackets and will include an Apple iPad for first prize in each age bracket. Gift cards will be awarded for second and third place. Entries must be submitted or postmarked by August 1, 2020 with prizes to be awarded later in the month. Entries may be submitted via email to skalafut@rensco.com and should contain the words “Essay Contest” in the subject line or you may mail your entry to:

Rensselaer County District Attorney’s Office
Attn: Susan Kalafut, Chief of Staff
Rensselaer County Courthouse
80 Second Street
Troy, NY 12180