By Benjamin Chambers, January 10 2010
Juvenile Justice Reform News
- As of January 1st, Connecticut has begun handling 16-year-old youth who break the law as juveniles, not as adults. Similarly, Illinois has also changed its policies and will now handle 17-year-olds who commit misdemeanors as juveniles.
- About 1 in 3 youth reported being sexually victimized by their peers or by staff in 13 juvenile detention centers nationwide, according to a Justice Department survey. The survey is the first of its kind and was given to about 9,000 youth. On average, it found that about 12% of youth in detention centers report being sexually victimized. You can read more about it (and find a link to the report) on Youth Today, with even more information here about what action might be taken federally. Some jurisdictions dispute the federal findings, in one case because the numbers are so different from in-house surveys.
- A lawsuit has been filed in New York over the maltreatment of youth in the state's juvenile prisons. The class-action lawsuit has been brought on behalf of about 500 youth. Among other things, the suit is intended to force the state to provide more treatment for the teens' mental health problems. Meanwhile The New York Times urged the state in an editorial to reform its juvenile prisons using the "Missouri Model."
Resources & Opportunities
- Here's an excellent resource on youth programs. Among other things, you can "assess community assets, generate maps of local and federal resources, search for evidence-based youth programs. (Hat tip to Alliance for Nonprofit Peformance.)
- Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) is having its 20th Annual Leadership Forum February 8-11, 2010. Organizers describe it as four days "packed with multiple opportunities to learn the latest strategies to fight substance abuse and hear from nationally-known experts and policymakers." Check it out.
- Looking for a great summary (with research citations) of the main barriers preventing adolescents from receiving treatment for their alcohol and/or drug abuse problems? Check out this compilation from the Substance Abuse Policy Research Program (SAPRP).
Updated: February 08 2018