skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Tornadoes kill 5 and injure dozens in Iowa; coalition presses lawmakers to put climate bond on CA November ballot; More residential care coming for children with acute mental health needs; and ND again ranks high for workplace danger.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

The House GOP moves to strike mention of Trump's criminal trial from the record, and his former rival Nikki Haley endorses him. Meanwhile, Ohio Republicans reject a legislative fix to ensure Biden's name appears on the November ballot.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Smokey Bear thought only "you" could prevent forest fires, but mushrooms may also help, a Native American community in Oregon is achieving healthcare sovereignty, and Colorado farmers hope fast-maturing, drought-tolerant seeds will better handle climate change.

Lack of PA Juvenile Detention Space Reaches Critical Stage

play audio
Play

Wednesday, August 31, 2022   

One goal of youth and family support services is to keep kids out of juvenile detention, but for those who are accused of serious crimes, Pennsylvania doesn't have enough space in its detention centers, and it is being described as a crisis.

A report by the Juvenile Court Judges' Commission outlined the effects of facility closures on accessibility to services. Since 2006, some 15 juvenile detention centers have closed in the state.

Abigail Wilson, director of child welfare, juvenile justice, and education services for the Pennsylvania Council of Children, Youth, and Family Services, explained a few factors contributing to the lack of available beds.

"Sometimes the youth need doesn't match the facility that they're being sent to," Wilson pointed out. "Sometimes there are staffing challenges because, in detention centers, there has to be a certain staff-to-youth ratio. And if they can't meet that, they can't continue to accept youth. There are sometimes medical concerns that can't be addressed at the facility."

She noted most recently, COVID has added to the complications. There are now 14 facilities providing secure detention services across the state, and 61 of 67 counties must vie for beds at just seven of them. The report showed staff shortages mean not all the beds can be used.

In the meantime, experts emphasized detention is never the ideal solution for a troubled youth. Wilson argued more mental health treatment, support for rebuilding family relationships and greater community involvement can all help contribute to preventing young people from entering the juvenile justice system or being placed in detention, but it takes funding and coordination.

"Building community-based centers, and places where families can come and receive help without stigmatized feeling, or feeling judged in a certain way," Wilson suggested. "Screening and assessment for mental health or needs, education or tutoring services are helpful; crisis intervention, family counseling."

Another consequence of the detention-bed shortage is young people often must be housed out of their home county, which puts a strain on families as well as juvenile probation departments.

Disclosure: The Pennsylvania Council of Children, Youth and Family Services contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Children's Issues, Education, and Social Justice. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
A partir de 2023, uno de cada cinco adultos inmigrantes legalmente presentes dice que no tiene seguro, en comparación con menos de uno de cada diez adultos ciudadanos naturalizados y nacidos en los EE. UU., según KFF. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

play sound

La administración Biden finalizó una norma que ampliará la cobertura de atención médica a los beneficiarios de la Acción…


Health and Wellness

play sound

The Biden administration has finalized a rule that will expand health care coverage to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients, who will …

Environment

play sound

Alliance Medical Center in Healdsburg just switched on new solar panels and battery backup as part of a plan to make the clinic more resilient to powe…


Some 170 community groups and nonprofits rallied in Sacramento on Wednesday in favor of a proposed bond measure to fund a variety of climate-related projects. (Community Water Center)

Environment

play sound

A huge coalition of 170 groups rallied in Sacramento on Wednesday, pressing lawmakers to put a climate bond measure on California's November ballot…

Health and Wellness

play sound

Colorado lawmakers are investing more than $15 million to ensure children experiencing complex behavioral challenges, including trauma, major …

The meal pictured above was served at a recent Minneapolis event designed to call more attention to climate change and its effect on food production. (Photo courtesy of Jayme Halbritter)

Environment

play sound

By Cinnamon Janzer for Civil Eats.Broadcast version by Mike Moen for Minnesota News Connection reporting for the Solutions Journalism Network-Public N…

Social Issues

play sound

North Dakota has not managed to substantially reverse its rate of workplace fatalities. An annual report puts the state in the top five in the …

Environment

play sound

North Carolina's 220,000 acres of salt marshes face multiple threats to their major roles in climate protection and ecosystem health, from rising …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright © 2021