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NCJ Number: NCJ 236933     Find in a Library
Title: Evidence on the Effectiveness of Juvenile Court Sanctions
  Document URL: PDF 
Author(s): Daniel P. Mears ; Joshua C. Cochran ; Sarah J. Greenman ; Avinash S. Bhati ; Mark A. Greenwald
  Journal: Journal of Criminal Justice  Volume:39  Issue:6  Dated:November/December 2011  Pages:509 to 520
Date Published: 12/2011
Page Count: 12
  Annotation: After describing the variability in sanctions across juvenile justice systems, this paper argues that despite substantial advances in evaluation research, this variability significantly restricts the generalizability of evaluation outcomes to date; and it raises questions about whether enough is known about the effectiveness of many juvenile justice sanctions to consider them proven and effective practices.
Abstract: The variability among types of juvenile sanctions means that youth may receive any of a range of juvenile court sanctions that include dismissal or release, probation, placement in a residential or custodial facility, or "other" sanction. Within these broad categories of dispositions are multiple variations in programming. Few evaluations take into account the significant but subtle variations in program components and outcomes for the types of offenders assigned to various program types. Given these circumstances, this paper cites six reasons for questioning the reliability of what passes as evidence-based programming. First, there is no established set of criteria for how different juvenile justice sanctions and various court-ordered programs and interventions should be classified. Second, new types of sanctioning approaches, including particular programs or interventions, often evolve in contexts that themselves may account for an identified effect rather than the sanction itself. Third, the external validity of many sanctions, including those examined in leading meta-analyses and reviews, remains largely unknown. There is limited empirical evidence regarding the impact of various interventions on diverse offender populations in diverse settings in association with diverse outcomes. Fourth, evidence regarding the internal validity of sanctions does not objectively represent social scientific consensus. Fifth, evidence on the effects of various sanctions on a diverse set of outcomes is rare. Sixth, few rigorous studies have examined the relative effectiveness of various incarceration sanctions compared to specific non-custodial sanctions. 3 tables and 100 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile justice policies
Index Term(s): Juvenile correctional facilities ; Community-based corrections (juvenile) ; Research uses in policymaking ; Corrections policies ; Juvenile Corrections/Detention effectiveness ; Juvenile sentencing
Sponsoring Agency: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
US Dept of Justice
United States of America
Grant Number: 2010-JF-FX-0620
Publisher URL: 
Type: Issue Overview ; Literature Review
Country: Netherlands
Language: English
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