skip navigation

Add your conference to our Justice Events calendar


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the NCJRS Abstracts Database. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.

  NCJ Number: NCJ 242431     Find in a Library
  Title: Breaking the Cycle of Abuse in Juvenile Facilities
  Document URL: PDF 
  Author(s): Barry Krisberg, Ph.D.
  Corporate Author: National Council on Crime and Delinquency
United States of America
  Date Published: 02/2009
  Page Count: 8
  Annotation: After documenting the prevalence of sexual assault and violence in juvenile facilities in California, Texas, Florida, and Marion County, Indiana, this paper presents eight recommendations for reforms.
  Abstract: First, youth corrections systems must implement research-based risk and needs assessment classification systems in order to identify those youth most likely to be victims or perpetrators of violence and/or sexual assault. Second, living unit sizes must be no larger than 20 youth. Barrack-style dorms should be phased out and staff ratios should be less than one to eight. Third, staff should be trained in techniques such as Normative Culture, which was developed by the North American Family Institute. Normative Culture creates “communities of dignity and respect” in juvenile correctional programs. Fourth, training in gender-responsive adolescent psychological development must be required of all staff working in juvenile corrections facilities. Specifically, the staff needs a better understanding of the victimization of gay, bisexual, lesbian, and transgender youth. Fifth, there must be adequate numbers of medical and mental health professionals assigned to juvenile facilities; and these clinical staff should be trained in recognizing and responding appropriately to incidents of sexual victimization. Sixth, institutionalized youth must have access to reporting and grievance systems that produce thorough investigations of alleged victimization. Seventh, youth facilities should be subject to regular inspections by independent groups with the authority to conduct confidential interviews with youth in order to identify potential problems of sexual victimization. Eighth, juvenile facilities must create living environments for youth that are as normal as possible. This means that harsh custodial tactics must be eliminated, and treatment and rehabilitation must be central features of juveniles’ custodial experience. This paper also briefly discusses the role of the National Institute of Corrections and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention in these reform efforts, as well as the role of nongovernmental groups committed to human rights. 14 references
  Main Term(s): Juvenile correctional facilities
  Index Term(s): Violent inmates ; Inmate classification ; Prisoner sexual assault ; Juvenile justice management ; Juvenile offender classification ; Juvenile correctional reform
  Sale Source: National Council on Crime and Delinquency
1970 Broadway, Suite 500
Oakland, CA 94612
United States of America
  Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
  Country: United States of America
  Language: English
  To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.