Juvenile Justice Reforms in S.C. Threatened by Deep Budget Cuts
Drastic cuts to the juvenile justice system in South Carolina are reversing significant gains made by reforms there, according to a New York Times story (see left for a still from the accompanying video, "Beyond the Fence.")
The Center for the Study of Social Policy's blog calls cuts to juvenile justice programs like these "shortsighted," because they avoid future costs and keep the community safer.
(UPDATE: Interestingly enough, budget woes seem to be driving states to adopt alternatives to incarceration -- including drug courts -- in the adult justice system.)
But what do you think? Leave a comment.
Roundup: A Guide for Juvenile Defenders in Juvenile Court; New E-Guide for Parents on Adolescent Substance Abuse; and More
- Do too many teens in your juvenile court waive their right to counsel? The Southern Juvenile Defender Center (of the Southern Poverty Law Center) just issued a teen-friendly brochure for Florida teens in juvenile court to convince them not to waive counsel. Best of all: you may be able to have the brochure adapted for your state by contacting Marion Chartoff.
Juvenile Justice Reform in Rustavi, Georgia
Here's a question that may not have crossed your mind lately: who's leading the charge on juvenile justice reform in Georgia? You'll be glad to know that someone is: UNICEF. Check out the video clip for a peek into its work abroad.
The Juvenile Justice System on TV: Lake County, Indiana
About six weeks ago, I noted that MSNBC was going to air six episodes on the Lake County, Indiana juvenile justice system on its show, "Lockup."
In an unusual move, the judge in Lake County gave MSNBC full access to film the youth. I haven't seen the show, but here's a local review [removed because of dead link]. You can catch a riveting -- and heartbreaking -- 5-minute trailer for "Lake County Juvenile Justice here.
Has anyone had a chance to see the actual show? Leave a comment and let us know what you thought.
Juvenile Justice Reform: A New Strategy for Addressing Disproportionate Minority Contact
Anyone who's serious about juvenile justice reform wants to address disproportionate minority contact (DMC), and several major foundation efforts have been chipping away at the problem for over a decade.
Now, TimeBanks USA hopes to bring the "practice of sending minority youth to confinement to a screeching halt."
Roundup: Judge Opens His Own Alternative School; Restorative Justice Pays Off; South African Teens Get High on Anti-AIDS Drug; and More
- A St. Louis family court judge has taken the unusual step of opening his own alternative school for youth in the justice system. The school features lots of oversight and plenty of after-school activities.
- The families of kids detained in San Francisco won't be charged after all. The city's head of juvenile probation has withdrawn the original proposal to collect fees for detained teens. He stated that only families of youth from outside the city (an estimated 30% of detained youth) would have been charged.
Effective Mental Health Screening in Juvenile Justice - 10 Key Steps: a Webinar
Youth Today tipped me off to an upcoming one-hour webinar on conducting mental health screenings and assessments in the juvenile justice system.
It's sponsored by The Council of State Governments' Justice Center and will be held June 30, from 3pm - 4pm EST. Among other things, the webinar will "showcase '10 steps' that have proven to be necessary for effective implementation of mental health screening in juvenile justice settings."
Follow the links to register.
*Photo copyright Adam Foster | Codefor; reposted under Creative Commons license.
Juvenile Delinquency: an Alternative Explanation, circa 1950
Yes, that's right. Here's a 1948 ad for an instant coffee substitute called Postum, in which "coffee nerves" cause a woman to drive her son (who's apparently also over-caffeinated) into the streets. He promptly steals fruit from a local market.
Roundup: Charging Families of Detained Kids Proposed; Swine Flu in Baltimore Juvenile Justice Facility; and More
- Charging families for detained children? That's what San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom is proposing, along with a host of other fees, to balance the city budget. Although the fees would be waived for foster children and families making 30% or less of the local median income, the proposal has come under serious fire from the City Supervisor.
- Three youth in the Baltimore City Juvenile Justice facility have swine flu, and 18 other youth and two staff members are showing flu symptoms as well. Does your facility have a plan for what it would do in a similar situation? June 21st UPDATE: six youth at a Louisiana juvenile justice facility have come down with the flu. It's not clear if they're suffering from swine flu, but officials took the precaution of suspending weekend visitation to prevent the flu from spreading.
Obama Administration To Increase Funding for Drug Courts
New Drug Czar Gil Kerlikowske (i.e., director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP)) was interviewed on NPR earlier this week when he visited an adult drug court in California.
In the interview, you can hear him talk about the value of drug courts as a crime prevention tool; the Administration's plans to double funding for them; and his dislike of the term "war on drugs."
Juvenile drug courts weren't specifically mentioned; it's unclear if the proposed funding increases would be proportionate.