D.C.'s juvenile justice system could be restructured and more -- news roundup
- On TV: "Young Kids, Hard Time"
On Sunday, November 20 at 10 pm EST, MSNBC will premiere a one-hour documentary that throws back the veil on the reality of young kids serving long sentences in adult prisons. (Hat tip to the Campaign for Youth Justice.)
- Reform: D.C.'s juvenile justice system could be restructured
Council member Jim Graham, charged with overseeing the city's Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services, is considering a radical change to the agency via, "job development programs, we would have literacy, we would be dealing with this marijuana addiction, having mental health because a lot of these kids are abused. It would be different."
- Civil citations are key to Florida's juvenile justice reform
On July 1, 2011, Florida law began requiring counties to establish a local civil citation process for youth that requires them to admit to the offense, perform community service and possibly participate in intervention services. The non-recidivism rate is 93% in one FL county that has been using this program for two years.
- New community care option for girls in Baltimore
Girls going through the juvenile justice system now have an alternative to detention while waiting to be adjudicated - an alternative that’s been available to boys for years. Some can now attend a youth monitoring program that allows them to live at home and attend a reporting center.
New Telephone Seminar Series: Teen Drug and Alcohol Awareness
Restorative Justice: A Working Guide for Schools
Last week, School Health Services Coalition, a division of Alameda County Health Care Services Agency in California, released Restorative Justice: A Working Guide for Our Schools. [Be patient: the document can take a bit to load in your browser. --Ed.] The publication is a resource for anyone who seeks to implement restorative justice in the school setting. The 43 page PDF covers the following:
- Introduction to restorative justice and its application to schools
- Use of the approach on three levels (1) as a school-wide prevention practice, (2) to manage difficulties, and (3) for intense intervention
- Benefits, outcomes and impacts from current evaluative reports
- Guidance on initiating restorative justice at the school or district level
- Abstracts of publications and websites for additional information and support.
Center for Juvenile Justice Reform: Engaging Families and Communities in Juvenile Justice and Child Welfare
Georgetown University Public Policy Institute’s Center for Juvenile Justice Reform (CJJR) is delighted to announce the release of Safety, Fairness, Stability: Repositioning Juvenile Justice and Child Welfare to Engage Families and Communities, a paper co-authored by Joan Pennell, Carol Shapiro, and Carol Wilson Spigner, with commentaries by Kordnie Jamillia Lee and Trina Osher. The paper was released at a symposium held at Georgetown University on May 13, 2011.
Interstate Commission for Juveniles Releases Bench Book for Judges and Court Personnel
The Interstate Commission for Juveniles (ICJ)—an organization responsible for the transfer of supervision for juvenile offenders and the return of juveniles who have absconded, escaped, or run away from one state to another—recently published a Bench Book for Judges & Court Personnel. This bench book provides an overview of legal procedures for the interstate agreement (called a “compact”) to transfer or return juveniles who cross state lines. It also includes an analysis of the compact’s legal foundation, describes sentencing considerations; establishes a process for returning juveniles who have run away from home, escapees, and absconders; explains liability and immunity considerations; and summarizes other relevant considerations.
Building Great Behavioral Health Care Organizations in a New Environment: Conference
Behavioral health care organizations -- including adolescent substance abuse treatment agencies -- face huge changes as health reform takes hold. How do you build a strong, vital organization that provides the best quality care?
We've built a conference around that very question: the 2011 NIATx Summit and SAAS National Conference, with the theme of "Revolutionary Strategies for Leaders." It'll be held July 20-13, 2011, in Boston, MA. (Don't know NIATx or SAAS? Scroll down for more info.)
Who should attend? CEOs, senior managers, and change leaders from behavioral health organizations who are focused on leadership, process improvement, and technology.
Evidence-Based Practices for Children Exposed to Violence: A Selection from Federal Databases - and More
- Research: Children Exposed to or Victims of Violence More Likely to Become Violent.
This publication from the U.S. Departments of Justice and Health and Human Services "summarizes findings from federal reviews of research studies and program evaluations to help communities improve outcomes for children exposed to violence. It cites evidence-based practices that practitioners and policymakers can use to implement prevention services and activities for these children." (H/t to www.findyouthinfo.gov.)
Juvenile Reentry - New Resources + Webinar
How do you help youth be successful who are returning from long-term placements, including lockup? Here's a number of resources -- in multiple media -- that you might find useful for improving how your community handles juvenile reentry.
1. Making the Most of Second Chances - Conference Materials
You may have been unable to attend "Making the Most of Second Chances," a national conference on reentry sponsored by the Council of State Governments' Justice Center and the Bureau of Justice Assistance (I found out about it via the always-helpful National Reentry Resource Center) held in Washington, D.C., in February, but here's the good news: much of it was caught on video.
By reviewing a list of the conference presentations, I found a couple that were focused on juveniles (you'll find video and PowerPoints):
Juvenile Justice System - Resources for Graduated Sanctions and Incentives
Research has shown that punishment alone is not the most effective way to to help a young person change his or her behavior -- the primary goal of juvenile drug courts, and, indeed, juvenile probation generally. Instead, a combination of punishment, or sanctions, with incentives, is most effective.
But if you want to act on this information, you're likely to have a number of questions. Here's just a few of the questions that commonly arise:
- Is there a ready-made list of sanctions and incentives we could use?
- Should we start out giving a strong sanction to get the offender’s attention, or should we build up to that?
- Are we coddling offenders by giving them incentives?
- Does it matter how long you wait after the behavior is detected to give a sanction or incentive?
And that's just the beginning. To help you make sense of the options -- and to give you several lists of ideas for your own graduated sanctions and incentives grid -- I'm posting a number of resources here.
From NCJFCJ (and shared with permission):
- "Making Sense of Incentives and Sanctions in Working with the Substance Abusing Offender," by Susan Yeres, Ed.D., Betty Gurnell, M.Ed., Meg Holmberg, MSW. (This excellent guide is where I got the four questions above -- download it to see eight more common questions, and answers to all 12.)
- Need ideas for incentives and sanctions? Then try the NCJFCJ's "laundry list."
- How can you afford to pay for incentives? What if the teen doesn't react the way we thought he or she would? You can find answers to these and other questions in the NCJFCJ's frequently asked questions document.
If your team is working on implementing incentives and sanctions together, you'll probably want these as well, also from the NCJFCJ:
Media Trainings for Juvenile Justice Advocates