Chijindu ‘Jindu’ Obiofuma is a movement researcher and attorney dedicated to writing, strategizing and convening groups around issues related to the abolition of the juvenile and broader criminal legal systems. She is a manager at the Lab’s Youth Justice Initiatives team whose work is premised on eliminating youth incarceration and divesting from carceral approaches to youth altogether. In addition to conducting targeted research and developing key resources alongside community partners and advocates, she provides site-specific advising and support for community and system partners hoping to transform what justice means for youth in their communities. She is committed to building accountable relationships between the academy and impacted communities, especially Black, Brown, poor, young, undocumented and otherwise marginalized folx whose expertise and leadership must be honored in the work to build community-based and -led alternatives to the juvenile carceral system.
Prior to joining the Lab in 2020, Jindu began her career at Harvard Law School’s Criminal Justice Policy Program where she contributed research to projects related to e-carceration, bail, pretrial detention, criminal court debt, emerging adult justice, and racial disparities in the criminal legal system. Jindu holds a juris doctorate from Columbia Law School where she founded the Prison Healthcare Initiative, interned at the ACLU’s Capital Punishment Project, served as a Staff Editor for the Columbia Human Rights Law Review’s Jailhouse Lawyer’s Manual and worked as a Teaching Fellow at the Eric H. Holder Jr. Initiative for Civil and Political Rights. She also holds a BA in Political Science from Washington University in St. Louis.