OJJDP Acting Administrator Chyrl Jones' Remarks for the 84th Annual NCJFCJ Conference
OJJDP Acting Administrator Chyrl Jones' remarks for the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges' 84th Annual Conference.
Recorded Welcome Remarks
Acting OJJDP Administrator
National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges
84th Annual Conference
St. Louis, MO
Remarks air date: July 19, 2021
Estimated length of remarks: 4:20 minutes
Good morning! I am Chyrl Jones, Acting Administrator of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, also known as OJJDP.
Welcome to the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges' 84th annual conference!
At OJJDP, we support states, communities, and tribal governments as they work to prevent and reduce delinquency, improve their juvenile justice systems, and protect children from violence and abuse.
The council has been a longstanding and valued partner in our efforts to safeguard youth.
During a year of unprecedented challenges, NCJFCJ stayed true to its mission of providing judges, courts, and justice professionals with knowledge and skills to improve the lives of the families and children, and victims who seek justice.
In 2020, the council trained nearly 10,000 judges and court-related professionals and responded to approximately 800 requests for technical assistance in the area of juvenile and family law.
OJJDP's partnership with NCJFCJ spans decades and has given rise to several innovative programs. We have collaborated with the council to enhance the effectiveness of juvenile drug treatment courts; provide resources to encourage positive school discipline reforms and stem the school-to-juvenile justice pathway; and host trainings on performance-based standards in juvenile probation.
As you know, judges and court personnel are uniquely positioned to identify and help children who have been abused, neglected, or exploited—or who may be at risk of victimization.
OJJDP's Child Abuse Training for Judicial and Court Personnel program teaches practitioners how to respond effectively to cases involving maltreatment, child sex trafficking, domestic violence, and families impacted by opioid use.
NCJFCJ supports the program with various forms of training and technical assistance, including the National Judicial Institute on Domestic Child Sex Trafficking, the Child Abuse and Neglect Institute, and trauma consultations to help courts mitigate the emotional, mental, and social damage that exposure to violence—including domestic violence—can have on children.
To help achieve safe, stable, and permanent homes for children in a timely manner, we also teach judicial personnel and attorneys how to coordinate information and services across the juvenile justice and child welfare systems.
I want to take a moment to acknowledge NCJFCJ's research division, the National Center for Juvenile Justice. The center leads the work on OJJDP's national data collections to analyze trends and disseminate information related to juvenile crime and victimization.
Data from 2018, the most recent year for which data is available, show that the number of youth held in residential placement is at its lowest since 1975. I believe we can drive this number down even further.
We know that juvenile delinquency is often associated with a range of factors, including family dysfunction, substance use disorders, and exposure to neglect and violence. It is imperative, then, that we intervene early to prevent youth from coming into contact with the juvenile justice system in the first place.
If youth do come into contact with the system, we must adopt a trauma-informed, evidence-based approach to their treatment and rehabilitation.
I cannot overemphasize the importance of community engagement and stakeholder collaboration when we seek to minimize risk factors and maximize protective factors for youth.
Our Strategies To Support Children Exposed to Violence program is helping to develop services for affected children and implement strategies to reduce violent crime perpetuated by youth.
The Comprehensive Youth Violence Prevention and Reduction program helps communities use data-driven intervention and suppression strategies to combat youth and gang violence.
Our National Gang Center provides resources and training on interventions, such as the OJJDP Comprehensive Gang Model, to help communities address youth gang activity.
We cannot work in silos if we hope to make a real difference and lasting impact in the lives of youth, families, and their communities.
OJJDP's strength lies in its partnerships with organizations such as NCJFCJ and with the dedicated people who carry out the critical work of responding to the unique and evolving needs of justice-involved youth and families.
I am proud of what we have accomplished together and look forward to ongoing collaborations to improve outcomes for our nation's youth.
Opinions or points of view expressed in these recordings represent those of the speakers and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice. Any commercial products and manufacturers discussed in these recordings are presented for informational purposes only and do not constitute product approval or endorsement by the U.S. Department of Justice.