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NCJ Number: 81787 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Deinstitutionalization in Illinois - The Case for Removal of Status Offenses From Court Processing
Author(s): I A Spergel; J P Lynch; J Korbelik
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 86
Sponsoring Agency: Illinois Law Enforcement Cmssn (see Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority)

National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 78-JN-AX-9994; 76-JN-99-0011; 76-NI-99-9948
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This analysis describes the impact of the Illinois Status Offender Service (ISOS) project initiated in 1976 on individuals and the juvenile justice system, as well as its negative consequences for deinstitutionalization policies.
Abstract: Primary data sources included a comparison of 305 preadjudicated youths served by the ISOS crisis component between July 1976 and January 1977 and 222 youths placed in secure detention between July 1975 and January 1976. A comparison of 68 adjudicated Minors in Need of Supervision was also made with a matched group handled by the Department of Children and Family Services and the juvenile court a year earlier. The report examines ISOS efforts to develop community-based services through contracts with local community organizations, foster parents, and advocates. An assessment of three different service approaches -- crisis intervention, longer counseling, and residential treatment -- revealed that cultural, organizational, and random factors determined the services pattern rather than individual needs. For example, females were more likely to be placed outside the home than males, and blacks were more often assigned to foster care than whites. Moreover, placement of a status offender in detention or an alternative program did not affect subsequent police contacts. The effectiveness of individual service approaches and the degree of their community ties were also evaluated. While the ISOS reduced detention for status offenders, it also contributed to an expansion of justice system processing for status offenses. Because fewer status offenders were handled on an informal basis and more now had court records, the rate of deinstitutionalization actually slowed. Recommendations to eliminate the status offense category and provide services through other channels are presented. Footnotes, tables, and 25 references are included.
Index Term(s): Deinstitutionalization; Illinois; Juvenile status offenders; Program evaluation
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