Last year, we posted about a hugely important study by the Center for Court Innovation. In it, young people reported that they did not receive a clear explanation of the juvenile justice system when they entered. Nor did they -- or their parents and guardians -- learn how their actions affected what happens in juvenile court.
Our Reclaiming Futures site in Orange/Chatham Counties, North Carolina is trying to change this and created the video above for parents/guardians of youth entering juvenile court. Congratulations! (They're also working on a handbook for youth; I'll share it when it's available.)
Has your jurisdiction done something similar? Leave a comment or drop me an email and we'll be glad to post it!
There's still a few days left to participate in the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's online forum on chronic trauma and the teen brain: it'll be open until August 31, 2010. Share (or skim) the latest in research on trauma and adolescent neuroscience, best practices in adolescent-serving systems and programs, and ethical considerations in these emerging fields.
The foundation may commit funding in this area, so surf on over there today!
Criminal & Juvenile Justice Policy
- America Behind Bars: a no-nonsense editorial from The Seattle Times says the time is ripe for prison reform. (Hat tip to @policy4results.)
- Berkeley Center for Criminal Justice just released a report on how girls are poorly-served by California's juvenile justice system. Though their numbers are rising, their unique needs are not adequately addressed by a system developed for boys. (H/t to @NCCDtweets.) The report recommended, among other things, using assessments that are right for girls (follow the link for a list from the Girls Study Group.) (Related post: What about the boys? Research shows that contact with the juvenile justice system actually makes boys more likely to commit crimes as adults.)
- This sounds like a bad sci-fi movie, but it's true: the Los Angeles County jail has installed a "pain ray" to subdue jail inmates, many of whom are awaiting trial and have not been convicted. It's understandable, since the goal is to intervene in altercations without harming inmates or deputies. However, the "ray," developed by the military, is apparently somewhat dangerous and could be deadly. What I really don't want to see: this "ray" used on detained juveniles. (H/t to @ACLU.)
Adolescent Substance Abuse Treatment - Key Policy
- Wonder how Medicaid is going to change under health care reform? The Kaiser Family Foundation has an online tutorial. --Does the thought of this make you yawn? This will have a significant impact on how states pay for indigent teens in the juvenile justice system who need mental health and substance abuse treatment. (H/t to @KaiserFamFound.)
- If you know the Reclaiming Future model at all, you know we believe that youth in the juvenile justice system who have substance abuse issues need "recovery-oriented care." So you can see why "Recovery-Oriented Care for Drug-Abusing Offenders" (which focuses on the adult side of the system), caught my eye. The authors recommend "an independent agency" to help coordinate the work of the juvenile justice and treatment systems to reduce recidivism.
What do you think? Do you agree? Do have experience with such an arrangement? Or is an independent agency necessary? (H/t to @Prison_Health.)
Juvenile Justice Resources, Research, and a Survey
- Two nationwide confidential surveys -- called "A Hand to Hold Onto" -- are seeking information on the prevalence of victimization and violence experienced by young people in Indian country. The surveys, funded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), hope to identify protective factors that might prevent juvenile crime. Surveys are open to American Indians and Alaska Natives -- one for young people 18-26; the other for adult policy makers and caregivers -- Amazon gift cards are available as a thank-you. (H/t to @NativeChildren.)
- Want to improve math and literacy instruction for youth in juvenile facilities? Follow the link for resources from NDTAC to learn how. In case you're curious, NDTAC stands for The National Evaluation and Technical Assistance Center for [take a breath] the Education of Children who are Neglected, Delinquent, or At-Risk. (H/t to Christina Weeter, at the National youth Employment Coalition [NYEC].)
- Somehow I missed this, but back in June, OJJDP released a report showing that transferring juveniles to adult court increased recidivism. (H/t to @policy4results.) I haven't had a chance to read it closely, but it's quite thorough and summarizes quite a lot of research. (See also a recent report from "Pathways to Desistance" researchers showing that transfer to adult court lowered recidivism for youth committing serious person crimes.)
Bonus Resource for Adolescent Substance Abuse Treatment Providers
- Above is a PowerPoint presentation summarizing SAMHSA's TIP 47: Substance Abuse: Clinical Issues in Intensive Outpatient Treatment. (H/t to Dick Dillon.) The description of the presentation says a narrated version and CEUS can be had from a website called allceus.com, which I mention as an FYI: I'm not familiar with the site or its services. If you have, leave a comment or email me and let me know what you think.
Updated: February 08 2018