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Juvenile Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions
(FAQ)

Including a Juvenile Justice Protection & Advocacy Program in the JJDPA Reauthorization Act

THE NEED

  1. Why is a national Juvenile Justice Protection & Advocacy Program (JJ P&A) needed?
  2. How would a JJ P&A promote delinquency prevention?
  3. What is the Protection & Advocacy (P&A) System?
  4. Are P&As better positioned to engage in this work than other non-profit, charity, or state or local government entities?
  5. Is a JJ P&A Program a cost-effective approach?
  6. Would a JJ P&A Program duplicate any existing programs?
  7. Would a JJ P&A Program duplicate CRIPA activities of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)?
  8. Why not let states and local governments address these problems on their own?

THE JJDPA REAUTHORIZATION

9. Why is the Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention (JJDP) Reauthorization
Act the most appropriate legislation for creating a JJ P&A Program?
10. How would a JJ P&A Program promote compliance with the JJDPA's "sight & sound separation" and "jail removal" requirements?
11. How could a JJ P&A Program promote "deinstitutionalization of status offenders"?
12. How would a JJ P&A Program address "Disproportionate Minority Contact" (DMC)?
13. Is adding a JJ P&A Program to JJDPA constitutional?

DELINQUENCY PREVENTION ISSUES

14. Are youth with disabilities more likely to commit delinquent acts?
15. How can reducing the Overrepresentation of Youth with Disabilities (OYD) in 
contact with the JJ system prevent or reduce delinquency?

COSTS AND FUNDING

16. Would including a JJ P&A Program in the JJDPA Reauthorization Act create a new program?
17. If it is not a new program, why is funding needed for a JJ P&A Program?
18. How much would a national JJ P&A Program cost?
19. How would a JJ P&A Program be funded?

ACRONYMS & GLOSSARY

REFERENCES

 

THE NEED

1. Why is a national Juvenile Justice Protection & Advocacy Program (JJ P&A) needed?

  • An overwhelming number of youth with special education and other disabilities come into contact with the juvenile justice (JJ) system, clogging the courts and overcrowding JJ facilities at great expense to state and local governments. The JJ system is ill-suited and under-resourced to handle many of these youth, and confining them in JJ facilities can result in more harm than good.
  • Creating a JJ P&A Program taps into an existing nationwide Protection & Advocacy (P&A) System for individuals with disabilities -- a well-established, federally-mandated network in every state that has a proven track record of success for over 30 years (further described in #3, below).
  • A JJ P&A Program can promote public safety by identifying youth with disabilities (YwD) and the services they need, to reduce delinquent conduct, recidivism, and future contact with the JJ system.
  • Adding a JJ P&A Program to the JJDPA Reauthorization would increase oversight and accountability for compliance with the Act through an independent network of experienced advocates.

2. How would a JJ P&A Program promote delinquency prevention?

  • A JJ P&A would tap into the disability expertise of the P&A network to improve the ability of the JJ system to effectively meet the needs of YwD. P&As seek to enforce existing laws, divert YwD from the JJ system when feasible, correct dangerous conditions of confinement, and promote reentry planning and aftercare services that support success and reduce recidivism.
  • In juvenile court, P&A staff can provide training to court personnel, consult with defense counsel, and advise probation officers and others regarding the special education and disability needs and rights of YwD in order to ensure decisionmakers make informed decisions and, when appropriate, divert YwD to appropriate community-based services in lieu of prosecution or incarceration.
  • In secure JJ facilities, P&A staff have the capacity to monitor conditions of confinement and investigate deaths and serious injuries to identify dangerous conditions and advocate for their correction. They can also provide training for and consult with facility staff regarding the needs and rights of YwD.
  • For youth returning from JJ facilities, P&A staff can consult with facility staff regarding discharge planning for YwD including identifying those who are eligible for Medicaid after discharge. After a youth has left a facility, P&As can assist with reenrollment in school and access to needed services. P&A staff can also continue to provide advocacy assistance after YwD have been discharged from court supervision.

3. What is the Protection & Advocacy (P&A) System?

  • The federally-mandated Protection and Advocacy (P&A) System is collectively the largest provider of legally based advocacy services for people with disabilities in the United States.
  • There is a P&A agency in every State, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. Territories. Additionally, there is a Native American P&A in the Four Corners region of the U.S. The Governor in each jurisdiction designates the P&A agency. Most are private non-profit agencies, but a few are part of a Legal Services organization or are an independent state agency.
  • Since 1975 P&As have been mandated by various Federal statutes to provide legal representation and other advocacy services to adults and children with any type of disability -- including but not limited to those with intellectual, emotional, sensory, and physical disabilities.
  • Each year, the P&A System serves approximately 100,000 individuals with disabilities through individual case representation and systemic advocacy.
  • P&As pursue legal, administrative, and other appropriate remedies under all relevant federal, state, and local laws, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation.
  • The National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) is the nonprofit membership organization for the P&A System. It promotes the integrity and capacity of P&As by providing training, technical assistance and other support.

4. Are P&As better positioned to engage in this work than other non-profit, charity, or state or local government entities?

  • The P&A System is nationwide. There is a designated P&A agency in every State, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. Territory.
  • P&A agencies have the expertise, experience, and infrastructure (offices, furniture, computer equipment, databases, protocols, etc.) to increase their advocacy in the JJ system immediately. P&A agencies are willing and able to promptly expand their services in the JJ system, and indicate that resources to hire additional staff is the primary barrier to doing so.
  • P&A agencies are independent. They provide objective, conflict-free oversight.
  • P&As provide advocacy for every kind of disability across the entire JJ system . The P&A System provides cross-disability advocacy in any setting, including: schools, court proceedings, residential facilities, and after discharge from a facility.
  • P&As work cooperatively with existing advocacy agencies and groups , and are permitted to contract with them when appropriate. During their annual priority setting process, P&As seek input from other groups, agencies, and members of the public.

5. Is a JJ P&A a cost-effective approach?

  • A national JJ P&A Program would be cost-effective in many ways. P&A agencies have the expertise, experience, and infrastructure (offices, computer equipment, databases, etc.) to immediately increase their advocacy in the JJ system upon receipt of funding to hire additional staff. 
  • P&As promote the use of evidence-based services, supports, and sanctions for preventing delinquency and diverting YwD from the JJ system that are: 
    • age, gender, and developmentally appropriate; 
    • culturally competent, family centered, and community based; and 
    • disability and trauma sensitive. 
  • P&As are knowledgeable about federal Medicaid and Social Security rights and benefits, and seek to leverage them to secure education, employment, and treatment services and supports that YwD might need to succeed. 
  • P&A advocacy can help states and counties save money and reduce overcrowding in facilities by diverting YwD from unnecessary placements to cost-effective community-based services and supports. In the JJ system, as in other child-serving systems, P&A advocacy has contributed to the downsizing and closure of facilities in favor of community-based services that typically result in considerable cost savings.

6. Would a JJ P&A duplicate any existing programs?

  • Adding a JJ P&A Program to the P&A System would not duplicate any existing program. The P&A System is the only nationwide, legally-based disability-advocacy program that advocates on behalf of children and youth with any kind of disability in any setting.
  • The P&A System is the only independent disability-advocacy program empowered by Congress to go into secure JJ facilities to identify dangerous conditions of confinement and violations of rights, including the right to be safe from abuse and neglect.
  • The P&A System is the only program that:
  • Exists in every state, D.C., Puerto Rico, and four other U.S. territories to provide legally-based advocacy services for individuals with disabilities in residential facilities and other settings.
  • Has federally-conferred authority to access and monitor facilities where persons with disabilities might be found, as well as access to the residents and their records.
  • Provides advocacy services over the life-span. It can follow individuals with disabilities from birth through childhood and their school years, and into adulthood up until death.
  • Provides advocacy comprehensively throughout the entire juvenile justice systemfrom initial contact with law enforcement, arrest, booking and detention; throughout the delinquency court processing, including disposition of adjudicated youth; and during post-adjudication secure confinement as well as during reentry after release from a JJ facility.
  • Has an existing infrastructure to engage in JJ advocacy immediately upon receipt of additional funding to hire additional staff.
  • Is independent from state and local child-serving systems.
  • Has a proven track record of advocacy on behalf of youth with disabilities, including: diverting them from unnecessary confinement; improving conditions of confinement by addressing risks of harm; supporting discharge planning and community integration upon discharge; and cost savings for state and local governments derived from less expensive community-based alternatives to expensive institutional placements.

7. Would a JJ P&A duplicate CRIPA activities of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)?

  • P&A agencies have a much broader authority to identify and address problematic conditions in facilities and to represent youth not confined in facilities. 
  • CRIPA limits DOJ to investigating facilities when it has sufficient evidence of potential systemic violations of federal rights. In contrast, P&As can monitor conditions in a facility for compliance with safety and other regulations without cause to believe that noncompliance is occurring. While the DOJ can only investigate a pattern of incidents in a facility, P&As can investigate isolated incidents of possible abuse or neglect, such as a suicide, death, or serious injury. 
  • Congress has conferred on P&As the authority to enter facilities to monitor conditions. The DOJ can only access a facility with permission of the proper authorities. 
  • P&As can represent individuals, but the DOJ cannot. During monitoring visits, it is not uncommon for P&As to identify problems and immediately resolve them. 
  • P&As can enforce compliance with rights conferred by state and local laws. The DOJ only enforces federal laws and rights. 
  • P&As are independent of any political or other influence, and can act as quickly as the urgency of a situation may require. 
  • Unlike the DOJ, P&As engage in prevention through training, technical assistance, and consulting with facility staff and others involved with youth with disabilities. P&As also engage in court-based advocacy, discharge planning advocacy, and community-based advocacy on behalf of youth on probation or parole (see #5, above).

8. Why not let states and local governments address these problems on their own?

  • Youth with disabilities are more vulnerable to abuse and neglect when housed in state-operated facilities that provide limited access to the public and the media. For example, Congress created the P&A System in 1975 in response to Geraldo Rivera's exposing the horrific conditions in Willowbrook, a state institution for people with "mental retardation" in New York.
  • Dangerous and abusive conditions of confinement can exist for many years in JJ facilities before being exposed. Glaring examples are the sex abuse scandal in Texas JJ facilities that came to light in 2007, and the widespread violence in overcrowded California JJ facilities that triggered a recent reform effort. P&As have been instrumental in exposing danger, abuse, and neglect in facilities that have resulted in system reforms and closure of unsafe facilities.
  • The P&A system serves as an independent "watchdog" to promote the safety and rights of the most vulnerable individuals in society. It also functions as a provider of training and technical assistance to JJ systems, including delinquency courts, JJ facilities, and JJ probation/parole offices.
  • State and local officials often express appreciation for P&A assistance in identifying and correcting rights violations and dangerous practices.
  • A fully-funded JJ P&A Program would support all P&As, including P&As in states that choose not to accept JJDPA Title II Formula Grant funding. A JJ P&A Program would provide additional safeguards for youth irrespective of whether a state accepts JJDPA funding.
  • P&A agencies work cooperatively with existing advocacy agencies and groups. In order to target its advocacy where it is most needed, each P&A annually develops priorities with input from stakeholders and all members of the public.

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THE JJDPA REAUTHORIZATION

9. Why is the JJDPA the most appropriate legislation for authorizing a JJ P&A?

  • The JJDPA is the central federal law relating to juveniles in contact with the juvenile justice (JJ) system. The Act supports delinquency prevention efforts and offers financial incentives for states to promote youth safety at the "front end" of the JJ system by:
    • Protecting incarcerated youth from contact with adult offenders through "jail removal," "sight & sound," and "separation" requirements,
    • Reducing unnecessary incarceration by diverting youth who engage in low-level misbehavior (status offenses), and
    • Addressing disproportionate minority contact (DMC), discussed in #12, below.
  • A JJ P&A Program would complement the JJDPA's provisions in many ways. Some examples:
    • P&A monitoring in secure jails, lock-ups and other secure correctional facilities can promote compliance with the Act's "jail separation" and "sight & sound" requirements.
    • P&As assist in identifying youth with disabilities who can be diverted from the system, and in particular youth who are status offenders accused of violating court orders.
    • P&A advocacy promotes delinquency reduction (see FAQs 14 & 15, below).
  • The JJDPA creates the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) .Congress has expressed serious concerns about OJJDP's effectiveness in fulfilling its mission. A JJ P&A can promote accountability and transparency regarding compliance with the Act.

10. How would a JJ P&A promote compliance with the JJDPA's sight & sound, separation and jail removal requirements?

  • A P&A agency's unique access to facilities, residents, and records can be used to verify that the facility is in compliance with the "jail removal," "separation", and "sight and sound" provisions of the JJDPA. The P&A can report to the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) any information indicating non-compliance with the Act.
  • P&A agencies have access to facilities where persons with disabilities reside and receive treatment services, including prisons, jails and lock-ups. In recognition of the need for independent oversight of secure facilities, Federal statutes require state and locally-operated jails and lockups to give P&As access to all areas of the facility which are used by or are accessible to residents as well as access to all residents in the facility. When investigating a specific incident of suspected abuse and neglect, P&As can also access resident information and records and facility records and reports.

11. How could a JJ P&A Program promote deinstitutionalization of status offenders?

  • P&As advocate for responses to misconduct that are appropriate to a youth's age and offense. 
  • P&A staff provide training and technical assistance to juvenile-court personnel and promote access to information about the educational, mental health, and other needs of youth with disabilities to help ensure they are treated in an age-appropriate manner and are provided developmentally-appropriate evidenced-based services and supports. 
  • Through their monitoring, outreach, training, and other activities in JJ facilities, P&As are in a position to identify incidents of noncompliance with the JJDPA's restrictions on the incarceration of status offenders, and pursue corrective action. 

12. How would a JJ P&A address Disproportionate Minority Contact (DMC)?

  • Disproportionate Minority Contact with the JJ system. DMC was recognized in the 1988 amendments to the JJDPA, and became a core focus of the Act in 1992. In 1997, youth of color made up approximately one third of the juvenile population nationwide but accounted for almost two-thirds of the population in secure juvenile facilities.
  • The intersection between DMC and the Overrepresentation of Youth with Disabilities (OYD) in the JJ systemIf 70 % of youth in JJ facilities have disabilitiesand 75 % are youth of color, there undoubtedly is a significant overlap between these two groups. Efforts to reduce the unnecessary overrepresentation of youth with disabilities will inevitably also address DMC.
  • The link between discrimination and mental health disorders . There is evidence that racial and ethnic discrimination increases the odds that youth will develop mental health problems. A recent study found a strong link between perceived racism and mental disorders in children.
  • Minority youth with disabilities: Risk factors for contact with JJ system.
  • Many Black and Latino youth have a large number of risk factors for contact with the JJ system due to life situations not of their choosing. These include poverty, lack of adequate supervision at home, overcrowded and under-resourced schools, inaccurate labeling as having a learning disability or conduct disorder, lack of access to mental health services, stereotyping, and racial bias in the JJ system.
  • Black and Latino youth who have special education or other disabilities have an even larger number of risk factors due to their disabilities being unidentified, misidentified, untreated, or inadequately treated. Examples of risk factors for JJ involvement include: lack of access to mental health and other needed services; poor academic achievement; challenging behaviors that are manifestations of their disabilities; lack of positive supports to manage such behaviors; suspensions and expulsions from school, stigmatization, victimization (e.g., bullying, harassment); referrals to alternative disciplinary schools; school drop-out; and exploitation (e.g., being tricked into doing things that get them into trouble).
  • These risk factors follow them into the JJ system , where youth of color with disabilities are at increased risk for: confinement in secure detention facilities, difficulty adhering to conditions of probation due to lack of supports, being adjudicated delinquent, harsher punishments, and longer periods of confinement in secure correctional facilities.
  • P&A advocacy can address these issues. In establishing annual priorities, P&As are required to give consideration to the special challenges of persons with disabilities who are racial or ethnic minorities in obtaining protection of their rights. (See, e.g., 42 C.F.R. Sec. 51.24(a)). P&As provide outreach, training, advocacy, and assistance to youth with disabilities and their families, teachers, juvenile court personnel including probation officers, and staff in JJ facilities to promote:
    • early and accurate identification of disabilities, and correction of misidentified disabilities;
    • diversion from the JJ system, adjudication, and secure confinement when appropriate;
    • development and implementation of effective Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) as well as Individual Justice Plans, Placement Plans, and Discharge Plans;
    • linking youth to special education and other appropriate, evidence-based services and supports that they may need to succeed;
    • identifying youth who are eligible for Medicaid and other federal, state, and local benefits;
    • family involvement and family strengthening; and
    • positive youth development and pro-social community participation.

13. Is adding a JJ P&A Program to JJDPA constitutional?

  • There is no constitutional impediment to creating a JJ P&A Program. It merely identifies the JJ system as a priority area for P&A activity, complementing existing federal P&A grant programs.
  • Youth confined in secure JJ facilities have constitutional rights to: be safe from abuse and neglect; necessary treatment for health and mental health problems; and educational and special education services they would receive if not confined.
  • Youth who are referred to juvenile delinquency court have a right to fair court proceedings that accord them their due process safeguards and reasonable accommodations for their disabilities, and a right to have all relevant information to be considered by decisionmakers.

 

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DELINQUENCY PREVENTION ISSUES

14. Are youth with disabilities more likely to commit delinquent acts?

  • The Overrepresentation of Youth with Disabilities (OYD) with the juvenile justice (JJ) system is well documented. Having a disability is a risk factor for contact with the JJ system. Theories that attempt to explain OYD include: school failure, susceptibility, differential treatment, and cognitive deficits. 
  • Some delinquent behaviors are related to unknown, untreated, or inappropriately treated disabilities. Identifying disabilities and providing timely access to appropriate treatment and services can prevent further contact with the JJ system.
  • Youth in the JJ system are "disproportionately minority, impoverished, and poorly educated, and many lack social networks -- characteristics known to limit the type and scope of mental health services provided to youth." 
  • Youth with disabilities can be prone to be bullied, harassed, and fall behind academically. That can lead to truancy, running away from home, and other behaviors that can result in arrest.

15. How can addressing the Overrepresentation of Youth with Disabilities (OYD) in contact with the JJ system prevent or reduce delinquency?

  • Identifying youth with disabilities and connecting them and their families to the services they need is more likely to result in these youth being diverted from being adjudicated delinquent and diverted from secure confinement. 
  • Studies have shown that meeting the special education needs of youth with disabilities improves their academic achievement and reduces future contact with the juvenile and criminal justice systems.
  • Youth who are confined in secure JJ facilities are more likely to engage in future delinquent acts or criminal offenses. Advocacy to divert of youth with disabilities from being incarcerated reduces that risk. 

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COSTS AND FUNDING 

16. Would including a JJ P&A in the Reauthorization Act create a new program?

  • No. A JJ P&A Program is not a "new" program, but rather serves to focus the existing P&A System on an emergent need. A JJ P&A Program creates a stimulus to transfer the knowledge, expertise, and skills of an existing, time-tested program to a non-traditional disability setting.
  • Adding a JJ P&A Program to the JJDPA Reauthorization Act does not create any new legal rights or entitlements, expand the authority of the P&A system, or duplicate existing resources.
  • The language creating the JJ P&A Program incorporates by reference the duties and responsibilities established by the first P&A Program created in 1975 – Protection & Advocacy for Persons with Developmental Disabilities. It established P&A systems in every state to pursue legal, administrative, and other appropriate remedies under all applicable federal and state laws in order to protect and advocate for the rights of individuals with developmental disabilities. With one exception, subsequent P&A statutes provide for new P&A Programs to be located within the same agency designated by the Governors under PADD.
  • While P&As have the expertise, interest, and willingness to extend their advocacy to the JJ system, lack of resources is a primary barrier. A fully funded JJ P&A would require P&As to include JJ advocacy as a priority.

17. If it is not a new program, why is funding needed for JJ P&A Program?

  • There has been a dramatic increase in the number of youth with disabilities in the juvenile justice (JJ system), creating an imperative for P&As to provide protection and advocacy in that system.
  • The population of individuals with disabilities is increasing in all age groups; e.g.: Veterans who have Traumatic Brain Injury; persons living longer who acquire disabilities as they age; persons with chronic disabilities who are living longer; students diagnosed with Autism; etc.
  • The P&A System is under-resourced to handle this increased workload, and cannot focus on youth in the JJ system without diverting resources from other clients with disabilities.
  • Because P&As do not have unlimited funds, each P&A adopts annual priorities using a priority-setting process that includes community involvement. Without dedicated funding for a particular issue, such as JJ, there is no mechanism to ensure that all P&As devote advocacy to it. Creating a JJ P&A Program would ensure that JJ advocacy is a priority for all P&As.
  • Authorizing a national P&A program to focus P&A resources on a target population is not a new concept. Other P&A programs have dedicated resources to a particular population of persons with disabilities (e.g., the Protection & Advocacy Program for Individuals with Traumatic Brain Injury).

18. How much would a national JJ P&A Program cost?

  • To ensure that the existing P&A System has the minimum staff resources needed for effective JJ advocacy, a fully funded JJ P&A Program would provide funding for each P&A to hire at least one full-time staff position dedicated to JJ advocacy. When the JJ P&A Program is fully funded, the amount each P&A can receive would be calculated using a population-based ratio.
  • When less than $6.6 million is appropriated for a fiscal year, it would become a competitive grant program. P&As would compete for grants that are no less than $120,000 for P&As in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, and no less than $60,000 for P&As in the four other U.S. Territories and the Native American P&A.
  • As with the other federal P&A Programs, each P&A would apply for funding each year by submitting an application, and each funded P&A would submit an annual report.
  • Also consistent with other P&A grant Programs, the National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) would provide training and technical assistance to the P&As receiving JJ P&A funding.

19. How would a JJ P&A Program be funded?

  • The proposed legislation creating the JJ P&A Program establishes a separate line item in the OJJDP budget.
  • The goal is a new funding stream that provides separate funding that is IN addition to, not carved out from, money appropriated for OJJDP to fund the Title II formula and block grant programs.
  • After the JJ P&A Program has been authorized by Congress, NDRN will educate Congress about the need for separately appropriated funding for the JJ P&A that does not reduce funding that would otherwise be appropriated to existing OJJDP-funded programs.

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Conclusion

There is an urgent need to create a JJ P&A Program. A JJ P&A Program would increase OJJDP accountability, decrease delinquent conduct, and increase public safety by promoting the use of cost-effective best practices for: identifying youth with disabilities in the JJ system and diverting them to appropriate services that meet their needs; reducing dangerous conditions in secure facilities and risk of facility liability; and facilitating reentry back into the community to help these youth become successful and productive adults.

For further information, contact:

Eric Buehlmann
Director of Public Policy 
National Disability Rights Network 
202-408-9514; Eric.Buehlmann@ndrn.org

 

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ACRONYMS, GLOSSARY & LINKS

CRIPA Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act of 1980, 42 U.S.C. §§ 1997-1997j, authorizes the Department of Justice (DOJ) to file suit against state or local governments for violating the civil rights of persons institutionalized in publicly operated facilities. CRIPA does not authorize DOJ to represent individuals.

Deinstitutionalization of Status Offenders

"Juveniles who are charged with or who have committed offenses that would not be criminal if committed by an adult… or such non-offenders as dependent or neglected children shall not be placed in secure detention or correctional facilities." JDDPA, Section 223(a)(11)

Disability There is no universally accepted definition of disability among children and youth. Federal and state laws, child-serving agencies, schools, and various programs employ different terms and use different types of information and approaches to diagnose and classify disabilities. The Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) defines  13 disability categories.

DMC Disproportionate Minority Contact. "Juveniles who are charged with or who have committed offenses that would not be criminal if committed by an adult… or such non-offenders as dependent or neglected children shall not be placed in secure detention or correctional facilities." JDDPA, Section 223(a)(11)

DOJ United States Department of Justice

IDEA Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

Jail Removal " No juvenile shall be detained or confined in any jail or lockup for adults." JDDPA, Section 223(a)(13)

JJ Juvenile Justice

JJDPA Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act of 1974 as reauthorized in 2002, 42 U.S.C. § 5601 et seq.

NDRN The National Disability Rights Network is the nonprofit membership organization for the federally mandated Protection and Advocacy (P&A) Systems and Client Assistance Programs (CAP) for individuals with disabilities. Collectively, the P&A/CAP network is the largest provider of legally based advocacy services to people with disabilities in the United States.

OJJDP Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office of Justice Programs, United States Department of Justice

OYD Overrepresentation of Youth with Disabilities in the juvenile justice system. OYD is a well-documented phenomenon that has not been rigorously studied. There is an urgent need for research about why it occurs and ways to address it at various points in the JJ system.

P&A Agencies Contact information for each of the 57 P&A agencies is available on NDRN's website using the "Choose your State" dropdown list.

P&A System The Protection and Advocacy (P&A) System and Client Assistance Program (CAP) comprise the nationwide network of congressionally mandated, legally based disability rights agencies. P&A/CAP agencies have the authority to provide legal representation and other advocacy services, under all federal and state laws, to all people with disabilities.

Recidivism Recidivism refers to the number of youth previously adjudicated delinquent in the juvenile justice system who are rearrested or seen at juvenile court intake for a new delinquent offense.

Sight & Sound Separation

" Juveniles alleged to be or found to be delinquent [and status offenders and non-offenders] will not be detained or confined in any institution in which they have contact with adult inmates." JDDPA, Section 223(a)(12)

Status offender " A juvenile charged with or adjudicated for conduct that would not, under the law of the jurisdiction in which the offense was committed, be a crime if committed by an adult. Status offenses include truancy, curfew violations, incorrigibility, running away, and underage possession and/or consumption of alcohol or tobacco.

YwD Youth with Disabilities 

For other terms, see:OJJDP Glossary

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REFERENCES

Perceived Racial/Ethnic Discrimination Among Fifth-Grade Students and Its Association With Mental Health , T. Coker, et al., Am J Public Health 2009 99: 878-884.

Blueprint for Change: A Comprehensive Model for the Identification and Treatment of Youth with Mental Health Needs in Contact with the Juvenile Justice System. (NCMHJJ, 2007)

Preventing Mental, Emotional, and Behavioral Disorders Among Young People: Progress and Possibilities, Mary Ellen O'Connell, Thomas Boat, and Kenneth E. Warner, Editors (National Research Council, 2009),

Psychiatric Disorders of Youth in Detention, Teplin, L.A. et al. (OJJDP Juvenile Justice Bulletin, 2006)

Racism hurts kids mental health (USA Today, 5-05-09)

Resources for Disproportionate Minority Confinement/Overrepresentation of Youth of Color 

Key Studies (Building Blocks for Youth)

The Costs of Confinement: Why Good Juvenile Justice Policies Make Good Fiscal Sense

(Justice Policy Institute, May 2009)

Youths with Disabilities in the Juvenile Justice System (NDRN, 2007)

Our_Members

NDRN Juvenile Justice Report

NDRN_-_JJ_Report