Corrections and Treatment
There are many community-based treatment efforts that the courts can implement into a juveniles punishment rather than to incarcerate. A few of these community-based treatments are: House arrest, residential programs, and balanced probation. House arrest is conducted through an electronic GPS monitoring system that uses an ankle bracelet to send signals directly to the police department. Individuals offered this form of punishment are forced to remain within a specified range of the receiver located at the individual’s residence. When the individual moves out of range, the tracking device immediately contacts the police department displaying a violation and officers are sent to apprehend the violator.
Residential programs on the other hand, consist of group homes, foster homes, boarding schools, and an apartment-type environment. Juveniles involved in these programs may be provided with counseling, educational-job training opportunities and are usually placed with other juveniles in a family structured setting guided by professional staff members. The balanced probation treatment focuses on teaching the juvenile to take responsibility for his, or her, actions through community-based corrections. Furthermore, each community-based correction is tailored specifically for the individuals needs and the type of offense committed.
House arrest allows the juvenile to remain within the community, family members, and continue with any educational and employment the juvenile may be involved with at the present time.
Moreover, house arrest is far less expensive than incarceration and those giving this opportunity pay for the services themselves. Residential programs are extremely important as these programs are designed to rehabilitate the juvenile through the use of counseling and educational-job training. Furthermore, some residential programs provide family structure for the juvenile. Balanced probation is a fairly new method that allows probation officers the discretion of tailoring rehabilitative programs-treatments for the individuals needs. In addition, juveniles are taught to take responsibility for their actions and in some sense can be considered a form of restitution to the community and victim.
Research studies taking show that male inmate groups are more likely than not to form allegiances with members of their own ethnic groups while exploiting other outside group members. This in return is creating a negative mindset and environment. Moreover, juveniles believe the only means of survival is to gain acceptance by members of their own race and become discriminatory-racist in the process. The longer these juveniles are subjected and allowed to remain in this type of negative social environment, the greater the chance the juvenile will carry a lifelong ignorance of discriminatory-racist behavior.
The second issue affecting institutionalized juveniles resulted from an increase in the feminist movement groups which have stigmatized young female offenders. Females on average are more likely to be incarcerated for status offenses than boys. In addition, institutions created for females are considered to be more restrictive than male facilities and offer less than adequate rehabilitative programs, treatments, educational and vocational. Feminist believe this is result of our correctional system being dominated and operated by a majority of men.
The juvenile justice system should be concerned with these issues as juveniles are extremely influential during the early stages of life. By creating an environment that tolerates racial segregation amongst male inmates and ignoring key concerns, such as proper rehabilitation programs-treatments for females, both sexes are developing negative characteristics that may have detrimental lifelong effects.
Furthermore, low self-esteems, anxiety, depression, negative cognitive behaviors can flourish and the recidivism rates will increase. Colorado State uses a multifamily counseling and life-skills service after the IAP program is complete. 60 days prior to release, juveniles take supervised trips to their community. Upon 30 days of completion, overnight-weekend home passes are permitted. During release, juveniles are closely monitored by parole officers and with positive results the supervision moves from daily, weekly, or monthly, ending with success.
The Virginia States IPA process places juveniles in a group home upon release for a period of 30 to 60 days depending. Two months prior to release, juveniles are contacted by officers 5 to 7 times per week. For the next two months this contact is reduced to 3 to 5 times per week and for the next two months the supervision is moved down to 3 times per week.
The importance of these after care programs is to offer different methods of rehabilitation, such as educational, job training, and counseling. In addition the juvenile is more likely to succeed upon release and will have the basic essentials needed to be productive in society. Moreover, by offering IPA programs the overall juvenile recidivism rate remains low.