Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2015, $199,654)
The OJJDP FY 2015 Smart on Juvenile Justice: Enhancing Youth Access to Justice Initiative will provide funding to (1) develop effective, statewide, well-resourced model juvenile indigent defense legal delivery systems; (2) develop and implement standards of practice and policy for the effective management of such delivery systems; and (3) develop state or regional resource centers to help state, tribal, and local juvenile defense systems enhance the quality of legal representation, leverage resources, and collect and analyze data to measure the effectiveness of specific initiatives. This initiative will provide cost-effective and innovative training for the juvenile indigent defense bar, including public defenders and court-appointed counsel working on behalf of juvenile indigent defendants, particularly in traditionally underserved locations, including rural areas.
Category 1: Youth Access to Justice State Reform Planning Grants will support state and tribal efforts to develop strategies and policies that will ensure that every juvenile receives the guarantees of due process and equal protection and that their constitutional rights are honored. The Department of Public Advocacy (DPA) is Kentuckys statewide indigent defense program, which is responsible for representing clients in 156,699 new cases per year, including 12,877 in juvenile court. While DPA has substantial access to data, it currently has no resources to analyze that data and identify how best to deploy resources and assess the cost of inadequate resources. To address this issue, DPA will initiate a comprehensive review of its operations, including a review of agency data and data held by other organizations, to determine both the cost of underinvestment in juvenile defense, and whether DPA can better use existing resources to meet juvenile needs, without sacrificing its obligations to adult defendants. In order to manage this process, DPA will contract with a Strategic Plan Contractor with expertise in the defense of children and youth in juvenile, family and adult court prosecutions and knowledge of indigent defense systems. CA/NCF