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Close to Home: Strategies to Place Young People in Their Communities

NCJ Number
Antoinette Davis; Angela Irvine; Jason Ziedenberg
Date Published
May 2014
10 pages
This report provides information on effective strategies for keeping justice-involved youth in their communities.
This report from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency (NCCD) is part of an eight-part series on finding strategies to reduce incarceration rates among justice-involved youth. The NCCD conducted a study of personnel from juvenile justice systems across the country to find ways for reducing incarceration rates among youth. The study found three main themes among the stakeholders: out-of-home placements should be used sparingly; whenever possible, youth in these placements should remain close to home; and youth should be placed in the lease restrictive setting possible. This report highlights three strategies that have been proven to keep more youth close to home. The first strategy involves developing a decision point, or a place in the process, where alternatives to out-of-home placement are reviewed. The second strategy, build a local continuum, involves developing and funding networks of local nonprofit placements for youth, targeting the treatment needs of youth, and using halfway houses, treatment centers, and local facilities as alternatives to placing youth far from home. The third strategy, reduce lengths of stay in facilities and at various points in the system, includes repealing mandatory minimum sentences, specifying the lengths of stay in provider contracts, and hiring expeditors to move youth through the system to reduce the time they are incarcerated.