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Juvenile Drug Treatment Court Guidelines

NCJ Number
Date Published
December 2016
60 pages
These guidelines are intended to help juvenile drug treatment court staff improve outcomes for the youth they serve.
These guidelines resulted from the partnering of the U.S. Justice Department's Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) with a research team, experts in the field, and other Federal agencies. The guidelines are based on research and evidence that support judges and professional court staff, youth with substance-use disorders, and their families. The research team conducted a systematic review of literature from the juvenile justice, child welfare, public health, and education research fields. A juvenile drug treatment court (JDTC) is a specially designed court docket for youth with substance-use disorders at medium to high risk for reoffending. Its purpose is to match youth with specialized treatment and services and to monitor, supervise, and guide youth through their treatment. Guidelines statements and supporting information are organized under seven objectives: 1) Focus the JDTC philosophy and practice on effectively addressing substance use and criminogenic needs so as to decrease future offending; 2) Ensure equitable treatment by adhering to eligibility criteria and conducting an initial screening; 3) Provide a JDTC process that engages the full team and follows procedures fairly; 4) Conduct comprehensive needs assessments that inform individualized case management; 5) implement contingency management, case management, and community supervision strategies effectively; 6) refer participants to evidence-based substance-use treatment, other services, and pro-social connections; and 7) monitor and track program completion and termination. The guidelines under each of these seven objectives are intended to provide evidence-based practices that have been effective in helping to achieve the objective. Approximately 150 references

Date Published: December 1, 2016