[vc_row][vc_column][trx_title style=”underline”]Objective E1: Youth Assessment Center[/trx_title][vc_tta_pageable no_fill_content_area=”1″ active_section=”1″ pagination_color=”black”][vc_tta_section title=”Section 1″ tab_id=”1571871988885-d5141fd4-dd8c”][vc_column_text]Approximately 7,000 juveniles engaged with the juvenile justice system in Shelby County in both 2014 and 2015. While most youth are neither vioIent56 nor likely to return to the system, evidence suggests that contact with the court system can enhance the likelihood of escalating behaviors.57 Shelby County has substantially reduced the numbers of youth transported to and/or detained at juvenile court. However, this “catch and release” system is frustrating to both law enforcement and the general public. These youth are still eventually processed as juvenile offenders, and law enforcement is still spending inordinate hours processing these youth, even for status offenses such as curfew violations. This is not the best use of limited resources nor are the outcomes necessarily the most beneficial to youthful offenders, their families, or the community at large.

Based on the best practices Miami/Dade County model, the juvenile assessment center (JAC) will unburden law enforcement by creating a drop off point where the needs of nonviolent juvenile
offenders and their families can be triaged. It will allow for creation of a compliance program similar to diversion focused on wraparound services and restorative justice principles, but handled outside of the jurisdiction of the juvenile court. Compliance with the JAC program will enable a youth to avoid all contact with the juvenile justice system.[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Section 2″ tab_id=”1571871988886-713c73e7-b682″][vc_column_text]Expected benefits (as realized in Miami) include:

  • More youth will be triaged to reveal underlying issues leading to delinquent behaviors.
  • Offending youth will have swift, sure, and measured repercussions for their behaviors.
  • Law enforcement officers are provided an option to remove the youth from the street or location, rather than catch and release, and spend less time in transfer.
  • Savings are seen through less law enforcement overtime as they get back on patrol quickly.
  • ¬†Public perception that nothing is done about offending youth may be positively impacted.
  • If fidelity to process is observed, more youth and families will receive meaningful services, thereby improving lives and strengthening communities.
  • Disproportionate minority contact may be positively impacted as more youth receive
    services instead of contact with juvenile court.

Key Objective Outcomes:

  1. Reduce the number of youth referred to Juvenile Court by at least 50% by 2021
  2. .Reduce the number of juveniles committing repeat delinquent acts by at least 35% by 2021.

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