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NCJ Number: 51538 Find in a Library
Title: RHODE ISLAND - YOUTH DIVERSIONARY UNIT - FINAL REPORT
Author(s): ANON
Corporate Author: US Dept of Justice
Law Enforcement Assistance Admin
United States of America
Date Published: 1975
Page Count: 25
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
US Dept of Justice
Washington, DC 20531
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE YOUTH DIVERSIONARY UNIT OF THE RHODE ISLAND FAMILY COURT, ESTABLISHED IN 1974, WAS THE NATION'S FIRST STATEWIDE DIVERSION PROGRAM.
Abstract: A DIVERSION PROGRAM REPRESENTS AN ALTERNATIVE TO TRADITIONAL COURT PROCESSING OF FIRST TIME OFFENDERS CHARGED WITH RELATIVELY NONSERIOUS OFFENSES. IT IS DESIGNED TO REDUCE THE BACKLOG OF CASES, SHORTEN THE PERIOD BETWEEN REFERRAL AND FINAL DISPOSITION, AND LESSEN THE CASELOADS OF JUDGES WHERE ADMINISTRATIVE RELIEF IS MORE APPROPRIATE. IN THE RHODE ISLAND SYSTEM, WHETHER A CHILD IS REFERRED TO THE YOUTH DIVERSIONARY UNIT OF THE FAMILY COURT DEPENDS LARGELY ON THE POLICY OF THE INDIVIDUAL POLICE DEPARTMENTS AND SCHOOL ADMINISTRATIONS, AND TO A LESSER DEGREE ON THE SEVERITY OF THE OFFENSE OR THE CHILD'S BEHAVIOR. ALL REFERRALS ARE SCREENED AND WHERE DIVERSION IS DEEMED APPROPRIATE, A CASEWORKER IS ASSIGNED. THE CASEWORKER INFORMS THE CHILD AND HIS FAMILY OF THE DIVERSION ALTERNATIVE AND, IF THE ALTERNATIVE IS CHOSEN, DESIGNS A PLAN FOR THE CHILD WITH THE HELP OF THE CHILD'S PARENTS. IN ORDER TO PARTICIPATE, A PARENTAL CONSENT FORM AND INFORMATION RELEASE AUTHORIZATION MUST BE SIGNED. THESE INDICATE THAT THE RIGHTS TO A HEARING, TO COUNSEL, AND TO REMAIN SILENT ARE WAIVED AND THAT INFORMATION ABOUT THE CASE MAY BE RELEASED BY FAMILY COURT PERSONNEL TO APPROPRIATE INDIVIDUALS AND AGENCIES. THE SIGNING OF THE CONSENT FORM IS INTERPRETED BY THE COURT TO BE AN ADMISSION OF GUILT. DURING THE FIRST SIX MONTHS OF THE RHODE ISLAND PROGRAM'S OPERATION, 431 JUVENILES WERE DIVERTED FROM JUVENILE COURT PROCEDURES. TWENTY-TWO WERE SUBSEQUENTLY CHARGED WITH A SECOND OFFENSE, RESULTING IN A RECIDIVISM RATE OF FIVE PERCENT. ALTHOUGH THE PROGRAM APPEARS TO BE SUCCESSFUL IN ACCOMPLISHING ITS GOALS, MORE STUDY IS REQUIRED.
Index Term(s): Family courts; Juvenile court diversion; Juvenile court procedures; Rhode Island
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=51538

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