Attorney General Hosts Summit Focused on Prevention, Deterrence, and Interdiction of Child Sexual ExploitationOn October 14, 2011, Attorney General Eric Holder convened a panel of experts from Facebook, Microsoft, and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children to discuss concrete ways to prevent and deter child sexual exploitation at a national summit entitled, "A Call to Action: Protecting Children From Sexual Exploitation." Attorney General Holder, who has made one of the U.S. Department of Justice's (DOJ's) key priorities the protection of children and other victims of human trafficking and exploitation, hosted three expert panels to explore solutions to this crime.
The summit brought together hundreds of attendees from law enforcement, industry, and child advocacy organizations. That collaboration delivers on a key goal laid out in the department's National Strategy for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction, which was launched last year. In the strategy, the department pledged to seek innovative solutions to this problem from inside and outside the government. An important deliverable from the summit will include recommendations by the expert panelists for the Attorney General to consider in DOJ's fight to stop child exploitation and abuse.
IACP Releases Findings From Survey on Juvenile Justice Training Needs of Law Enforcement
The International Association of Chiefs of Police has published Juvenile Justice Training Needs Assessment: A Survey of Law Enforcement. The report includes findings from a survey of law enforcement officers across the nation, which identified the challenges and training needs law enforcement faces when working with juvenile crime, delinquency, and victimization. The report describes data on department training budgets and needs, juvenile justice operations, and the most pressing juvenile justice issues for the jurisdictions included in the survey. The full report is available online, as are highlights of the report.
Second Annual Bullying Prevention Summit
The U.S. Department of Education, in partnership with other federal agencies, sponsored the second annual Bullying Prevention Summit on September 2122, 2011, in Washington, DC. The event brought together representatives from federal agencies, national organizations, parents, teachers, and students to discuss and share progress on antibullying efforts across the country.
"Bullying affects not only the child or children it targets, but the entire community that surrounds themtheir parents, their classmates, even the child engaging in the bullying," said Education Secretary Arne Duncan. "Keeping our children safe is everyone's responsibility, and I'm proud to come together with so many national leaders, parents, teachers, and students to reaffirm our collective commitment to prevent bullying in every way possible."
Over the past year, the Education Department has partnered with OJJDP to host Webinars addressing topics such as when bullying constitutes harassment and how to constructively intervene in bullying situations.
Report on Tribal Youth in the Federal Justice System Now Available
Tribal Youth in the Federal Justice System, cosponsored by OJJDP and the Bureau of Justice Statistics, is now available online. The report describes findings from a study that explored issues surrounding American Indian youth who were processed in the federal justice system, using data from the Federal Justice Statistics Program collected between 1999 and 2008, and interviews with tribal and federal officials. Specifically, the report discusses the prevalence, characteristics, and outcomes of these youth at each stage of the justice system. Photocopies of the document may be ordered online.
Internet Crimes Against Children Task Forces Praised as "Undersung Heroes"
The September 2011 issue of Health Affairs, a monthly health policy journal, features an essay describing how one Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) task force helped administrators at Rady Children's Hospital in San Diego, CA, identify two staff members engaging in child molestation and pornography. Both individuals were arrested, convicted, and are currently serving sentences. "Looking back at the experience, I've realized there was an undersung hero in our hospital's story: the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Forces, such as the one in San Diego," said the article's author, Blair L. Sadler, who was the hospital's executive officer in 2006, when the story unfolded. The ICAC Task Force program is a national network of 61 coordinated task forces representing nearly 3,000 federal, state, and local law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies. In fiscal year 2011, OJJDP awarded $30 million to support the program. A recording of Mr. Sadler reading his essay is available online.
FBI Launches Child ID Mobile App
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has launched the Child ID App. This free mobile App provides a convenient place to electronically store photos and vital information about one's children that can be easily provided to authorities if a child goes missing.
The App allows users to send informationincluding pictures or other physical identifiers such as height and weightto authorities with a few clicks. It also provides tips on keeping children safe and guidance on what to do in the first few crucial hours after a child goes missing.
The Child ID App is currently available for use on iPhones and can be downloaded for free from the App Store on iTunes. The FBI is planning to expand the tool to other types of mobile devices in the near future. More information about the FBI's Child ID App is available online. The App can be downloaded for free from the App Store on iTunes.
Webinar on Wraparound Services in Indian Country Available Online
On September 22, 2011, OJJDP and Education Development Center sponsored a Webinar on implementing the wraparound model in Indian country. The model incorporates traditional tribal teachings and involves a continuum of services, including employment programs, family and individual counseling, substance abuse treatment, and academic programs in response to the individual needs of tribal youth and their families. Deb Painte, Executive Director, Native American Training Institute, and Joe Walker, Evaluator, Native American Training Institute, discussed how the wraparound model differs from standard treatment approaches, how wraparound services are appropriate for tribal youth in the juvenile justice system and their families, and how the model can be incorporated into the tribal juvenile justice system. All materials, including an audio/video recording of the Webinar, can be found online.
OJJDP's Acting Administrator Lends Support to U.S. Department of Labor's $20 Million Reentry Project
The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently announced the award of Civic Justice Corps program grants totaling $20 million to 15 organizations to provide formerly incarcerated youth ages 1824 with community service projects, educational interventions, career development activities, and other programs that reconnect youth with their communities and offer pathways to success.
In September, OJJDP Acting Administrator Jeff Slowikowski sent a letter to administrative law judges in local jurisdictions of organizations receiving the grants expressing support for the initiative. Mr. Slowikowski stressed the importance of "linking young adults with a history of juvenile justice involvement with organizations that can improve their skills and long-term employment prospects." He urged the letter's recipients to consider referring young offenders who are under the extended age of juvenile court jurisdiction to the DOL-supported Civic Justice Corps initiative.
Eligible individuals include those who are on probation from the juvenile system, who have received an alternative sentence or were diverted before adjudication as an alternative to juvenile prosecution, or who have been incarcerated in the juvenile justice system within the past year. Electronic copies of the letter were sent to executive directors of designated state juvenile justice agencies, juvenile justice specialists, and State Advisory Group chairs.
For nearly a quarter-century, OJJDP has been committed to supporting the successful reintegration of juvenile offenders into their communities. In fiscal year 2011, OJJDP awarded more than $14.2 million in grants for juvenile justice reentry programs under the Second Chance Act of 2007.