Correctional Ministries and
Chaplains Association

Juvenile/Youth

   
Juvenile courts in the United States ostensibly operate with the overarching goals of holding youth accountable for wrongdoing, reducing crime, and increasing public safety. However, the actual policies and practices of state juvenile justice systems frequently work against these goals. “Holding youth accountable” is often simplified to involve only punishment—formal court processing with harsh consequences or incarceration for even minor offenses, despite more and more studies confirming the ineffectiveness of these approaches. Too few juvenile justice systems use programs and practices that teach youth about the consequences of their wrongdoing in a holistic way, or give youth opportunities to restore damage they have caused, when feasible, and the tools to learn from their mistakes and make better choices in the future.

Whether you were expecting it or not, news of your child’s arrest can be extraordinarily difficult. In that moment of blurred emotions, it’s not easy to think clearly or understand what will happen next.  This booklet walks you step-by-step through the process, sharing stories of pain and healing from other parents who have traveled the same road. Not only will you get a sense of what to expect from the legal system, you’ll find information on what your child may experience while being detained.  Discover how you can participate in the process and become your son or daughter’s best advocate during and after confinement.

This report provides guidance and recommendations for achieving successful reentry services and programs. Sections following an executive summary are: introduction; characteristics of reentry youth; collateral consequences associated with out-of-home placement; essential components of youth reentry services; effective outcomes for youth reentry; federal support for reentry in the child welfare system; principles for effective youth reentry; and recommendations for federal leadership in youth reentry.

The following articles are found in the Members Section of the CMCA Website.