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I was flattered and somewhat humored when JJAT invited me to speak at their keynote slot after TYC Executive Director Dimitria Pope backed out. (Thanks to Lubbock probation chief Les Brown whose department hosted the conference, and the Association board for inviting me.)
While this blog focuses a great deal on happenings at TYC, most youth offenders never go there - 97-98% of juvenile crimes prosecuted in Texas result in sentences implemented by local juvenile probation departments. So I researched and prepared a 17-page, footnoted "white paper" to present at the event describing how reforms enacted this spring impact local juvenile justice systems. While some of the information presented has been published on Grits, I learned a lot myself putting it together - particularly regarding impacts on counties, local juvenile probation departments and detention centers - and I've not seen many of these topics discussd publicly before since SB 103 passed. In broad stroke the paper argues that:
Fewer kids will go to TYC, and those who go will stay for a shorter time. Learn why.
New inspection responsibilities for the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission, local juvenile boards, and judges.
Looking to the Future: Counties must develop local incarceration alternatives, more sophisticated youth re-entry strategies, and strengthen community supervision to prepare for #1. What realistically can be done?
Get your own copy of "Surviving the TYC Meltdown" right now!