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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 77334 Find in a Library
Title: Locating Administrative Responsibility for Juvenile Court Services - A Framework To Guide Decisionmaking (From Major Issues in Juvenile Justice Information and Training - Readings in Public Policy, P 491-503, 1981, John C Hall et al, ed. - See NCJ-77318)
Author(s): T M Young
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 13
Sponsoring Agency: Academy for Contemporary Problems
Sale Source: Academy for Contemporary Problems
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Factors that should be considered in planning the development, reorganization, and location of such juvenile court services as detention and community treatment are examined to provide a decisionmaking framework for use by planners concerned with juvenile justice and children's services.
Abstract: The current focus on procedural aspects of the juvenile justice system has diverted attention from systematic consideration of how to organize and administer the social services traditionally provided by the juvenile court. Five factors of critical importance to planning the location, organization, and administration of juvenile court services are technological capability, programmatic flexibility, financing, political invulnerability, and authority. Technological capability refers to the host agency's ability to hire and retain staff with the technical competence for working with a variety of complicated case situations like those brought before juvenile courts. Programmatic flexibility and a diversity of services are necessary to allow for individualized service, opportunity for innovation without changing the entire system, and creative management. Although a purchase-of-service capability may be needed to implement this approach, a case management approach designed to coordinate several agencies' efforts on behalf of individual youths and their families may be equally effective. Host agencies' financial stability and growth potential are both important because of the time required to establish a comprehensive system of services and the increase in demand for services which occurs as services are made available. An agency should also have an established basis of political and popular support in the community in order to withstand occasional episodes generating unfavorable media publicity without having to revamp, curtail, or otherwise disrupt its service delivery program. The factor of authority to monitor service delivery and ensure compliance with standards of care should also be assessed when considering a possible host agency for court services. Variations across jurisdictions, agencies, and branches of government on these five factors is such that a single solution to the problem of where to locate services would stifle the creativity needed to design and administer services in different contexts. In addition, social services, unlike procedural reforms, lend themselves to flexibility and diversity rather than to standardization and uniformity. Footnotes are provided.
Index Term(s): Community-based corrections (juvenile); Court management; Evaluation criteria; Juvenile detention; Juvenile probation; Juvenile processing; Planning
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