Throughout my first term, I’ve researched programs being used in other parts of the country that are producing results on a range of issues. I traveled to New York, Las Vegas, and Washington, DC with the County’s Probation Department to study programs in those cities that are models for addressing juvenile justice reform. As a region, we continue to see a decline in the number of youth involved in the justice system.
In August of 2018, I introduced the Achievement Center model as an alternative to juvenile hall for kids on probation who are having trouble adhering to their court order. By providing alternatives like the Achievement Centers, we can safely and effectively prevent unnecessary detention and promote a social and rehabilitative approach for our at-risk youth. The Achievement Centers will provide structure and accountability during the critical after-school hours, promoting long-term success and keeping the community safe by providing an array of services including academic assistance, literacy skills, introduction to career and technical education pathways, individual and family case management, life and social skills development, and opportunities for leadership, all building resilience and self-esteem so that they can succeed in life.