Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2013, $347,500)
The overall purpose of this initiative is to provide funding to Civics First to implement a Youth-Law Enforcement Training Project nationally to (A) increase patrol officer knowledge of youth development and strategies for handling juveniles as well as skills in communicating effectively with the youth in the communities they serve in ways that improve mutual respect and understanding; and (B) increase police awareness of the issue of disproportionate minority contact with the juvenile justice system (DMC) and develop the capacity of law enforcement agencies to understand and respond to DMC. Civics First will implement the proven effective curriculum across the U.S. Entitled "Effective Police Interactions with Youth," the curriculum's subject matter is human relations and does not cover specific juvenile law so it is appropriate for communities in any state. In an evaluation with an experimental design using pre- and post-testing and a control group, the curriculum has been shown to increase knowledge and improve police attitudes towards youth.
The curriculum will be shared with interested jurisdictions through a "Train the Trainer" model, in consultation with OJJDP. It is expected that through this project about twenty-two (22) state, county or local jurisdictions will have the opportunity to see the training; about thirteen (13) partnering jurisdictions will host a three-day Train the Trainer course and become prepared to train others; and of those receiving the Train the Trainer course. Follow-up training and consultation will be available as well as technical assistance about youth leadership strategies.