July | August 2018

Message From the Administrator: Reimagining Title II Work To Better Serve

Hello. I’m Caren Harp, Administrator of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

OJJDP’s Title II Formula Grants funds help states address juvenile delinquency and support improvements to the juvenile justice system. The funds also help states address the “core protections” of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (deinstitutionalization of status offenders, separation of juveniles from adult inmates, and removal of juveniles from adult jails and lockups), as well as system efforts designed to reduce disproportionate minority contact (DMC) with the juvenile justice system.

States continue to see good results in the deinstitutionalization of status offenders, sight and sound separation, and adult jail removal. However, for a host of reasons, the disproportionate involvement of minority youth in the justice system remains largely unchanged. To address this complex issue, we met with experienced practitioners, and gathered feedback from the field. The result is a new, outcome-based approach to assist states in their efforts to address DMC, while at the same time maintaining public safety, holding youth accountable for their conduct, and empowering them to live crime-free, successful lives.

Beginning in 2019, OJJDP will implement a streamlined Title II application process that will simplify DMC data collection requirements, and lessen the administrative burden on states, freeing them up to do more direct work with youth and communities. Additionally, we will ask states to identify how they define success with their DMC reduction efforts, and to evaluate the outcome of their DMC plans, to assess what impact they had, if any, on disproportionality. OJJDP will share every state’s self-identified goals, action plans, and outcomes on our website to help ensure transparency and accountability, and to facilitate the sharing of successful strategies across jurisdictions.  

Finally, as part of an internal reorganization, we recently combined OJJDP’s Title II Formula Grants Program work, and the agency’s core protection work into the State Relations and Assistance Division (SRAD). Under the direction of OJJDP Associate Administrator Dr. TeNeane Bradford, SRAD program specialists will support Title II Formula Grants programming, advance states’ core protections work, and help states connect with training and technical assistance.

Bringing the programmatic and core protections functions together will foster communication between these two related functions and enhance delivery of technical assistance.

For more information about OJJDP programs, visit our website at OJJDP.gov.

Thank you.