Supporting youth and families to reduce recurrence of legal system involvement

icon_effectiveFeedback from youth and families involved with the legal system, community members, and employees indicates the need for additional support for family members while navigating the complexities of the juvenile legal system. Offering such support programs and resources can help build trust, establish safety, and empower families.

The objective recognizes that young people who remain in their own community generally have better outcomes after contact with the juvenile legal system. When community-based resources are not a viable option and a youth must be placed in secure detention as a last resort, family engagement and reentry supports are even more essential.

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Informed by the evolving understanding of adolescent brain development, principles of equity and social justice, and by communities and King County employees, the strategies for achieving this objective work together to support youth and families in their communities so that they live their full potential; youth do not return to the legal system; negative impacts to their lives are minimized; and their inherent strengths and skills are promoted.

Stay tuned for the rest of the Diving into the Road Map blog series that will further explore the strategies and action items of this objective:

Objective 4: Support

Support youth and families to reduce recurrence of legal system involvement and increase healthy outcomes

The objective recognizes that young people who remain in their own community generally have better outcomes after contact with the juvenile legal system. However, when community-based resources are not a viable option and a youth must be placed in secure detention as a last resort, family engagement and reentry supports are essential.

Strategies

  1. Expand family engagement opportunities and connections
  2. Reengage youth from detention into community
  3. Ensure detained youth receive trauma-informed, culturally responsive, and developmentally appropriate care and services

Example Action Items

  • Continue to expand visitation access to youth in detention
  • Link youth exiting detention and their families with community ambassadors, credible messengers, community navigators and mentors and other supports
  • Explore and pilot probation models that incorporate the principles of adolescent development

In the meantime, you can read more about this objective in the Road Map report.