Thursday, March 26, 2009

Federal Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Reauthorization Act Introduced

Senator Patrick Leahy announced the introduction of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Reauthorization Act (S. 678). The Act amends the 1974 Act and includes new provisions such as requirements for State plans to include:

1) Alternatives to detention, including diversion to home-based detention or community-based services or treatment for those youth in need of mental health, substance abuse, or co-occurring disorder services at the time the juvenile first came into contact with the juvenile justice system.

2) A reduction in the number of children housed in secure detention and corrections facilities who are awaiting placement in residential treatment programs.

3) Inclusion of family members in the design and delivery of juvenile delinquency prevention and treatment services, particularly post-placement.

The Act also authorizes incentive grants to state and local governments for juvenile delinquency prevention programs, including evidence based programs for the prevention and reduction of juvenile delinquency, personnel recruitment and training, and mental health and substance abuse screening and treatment.

See state policies to implement the requirements under the Act related to juvenile detention.

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