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Girls in the Juvenile Justice System: Needs, Intervention Services, and Policy Implications. Leslie Leve and Patricia Chamberlain Oregon Social Learning Center & the Center for Research to Practice

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slide1

Girls in the Juvenile Justice System:

Needs, Intervention Services, and Policy Implications

Leslie Leve and Patricia Chamberlain

Oregon Social Learning Center & the Center for Research to Practice

Independence Day: Research, Resources, & Law Reform for Teens Transitioning out of State Programs

University of Oregon School of Law, April 6, 2007

slide2

Services

Policy

Research

the oregon multidimensional treatment foster care model mtfc
The Oregon Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care Model (MTFC)
  • Objective: To change the negative trajectory of delinquent behavior by improving social adjustment with family members and peersthrough simultaneous and well-coordinated treatments in the youth’s natural environment: the home, school, & community.
  • Treatment is provided in a family setting where new skills can be practiced and reinforced.
structure of mtfc
Structure of MTFC
  • Targets youth being placed in group homes or training schools because of serious and chronic delinquency
  • Youth are placed singly in intensively trained and supervised community foster homes that are contacted daily and supported 24/7
  • Youth receive family therapy, skills training and individual treatment
  • Program supervisors carry caseloads of 10. They supervise foster parents, therapists, & skills trainers and work with judges and parole/probation officers
  • Youth attend public schools
critical components of mtfc known risk and protective factors
Critical Components of MTFC :Known Risk and Protective Factors
  • Provision of close supervision
  • Provision of consistent limits and consequences for rule violations and antisocial behavior (non-harsh discipline)
  • Minimization of influence of delinquent peers
  • Daily adult mentoring
  • Encouragement/reinforcement for normative appropriate behavior and attitudes
  • Youth’s parents increase skills at supervision, limit setting, reinforcement
basic approach

Positive

Positive

Positive

Negative

Positive

Basic Approach
  • Facilitating a balance of encouragement and limit setting
  • Treatment team concept
  • Consistency across settings in which the youth exists
program staffing structure
Program Staffing Structure

Central Concept: Roles are stratified

  • Program Supervisor
  • Foster Parent Consultant
  • Youth Therapist/Skills Trainer
  • Family Therapist
  • ‘Parent Daily Report’ Caller
  • Consulting Psychiatrist
implementation sites
Implementation Sites
  • The UK
  • Sweden
  • Holland
  • The US
    • Over 40 sites, including 3 in Oregon (Eugene, Salem, and Portland)
slide9

The Oregon Juvenile Justice Girls Studies (Chamberlain & Leve)

Funded by:

National Institute of Mental Health (MH 46690);

National Institute on Drug Abuse (DA 15208);

Oregon Youth Authority

Sample:

Rolling recruitment of juvenile justice girls who have been referred by court judges in Lane County between 1996 – 2006 for out-of-home placement due to chronic delinquency.

slide10

Group Care

(n = 93)

3- & 6-mo.

in-placement

assessment

of mediating

variables

(ave. stay in

treatment =

5 months)

12- & 24-mo.

follow-up

assessment

of outcomes

MTFC

(n = 80)

The Study Randomization and

Assessment Process

  • Baseline assessment
  • Enter randomized
  • placement

Each participant had at least one criminal offense

Recruitment and assessment are ongoing. Final numbers will vary

jj girls family chaos and abuse
JJ Girls: Family Chaos and Abuse
  • 17 transitions in parent figures (6 before age 13)
  • 2.4 prior out-of-home placements
  • 81% had at least one parent convicted of a crime
  • 93% have a history of documented physical or sexual abuse
  • 79% have witnessed domestic violence
jj girls behavioral health risks
JJ Girls: Behavioral & Health Risks
  • 12 average lifetime arrests (first at age 12 ½; 72% have at least 1 felony)
  • 50% have had a suicide attempt
  • 26% have been pregnant
  • 66% have used hard drug in last year (36% use hard drugs 1-7 times/week)
  • 78% are academically below grade/age level
slide14

Decrease in Days in Locked Settings over Time

(in 12-month increments)

Days in Locked Settings

slide15

Increase in Homework Completion at 12-months

Days/week spent 30 min on hmwk

jj girls partners and peers
JJ Girls Partners and Peers
  • The most common response to “who do you hang out with” is boys 2-4 years older, with nearly half the sample reporting that they hang out with boys 5+ years older
  • Girls’ partners are 2 ½ years older than the girl; 2/3 of the partners have been arrested previously and over one-third are hard drug users
  • These peer and partner characteristics are linked to girls’ health-risking sexual behaviors and drug use

(Chamberlain & Reid, 1998; Eddy, Whaley, & Chamberlain, 2004)

mtfc effects for boys
MTFC Effects for Boys
  • More time in program/fewer runaways
  • Less time in “locked” incarceration in follow-up
  • Fewer criminal offenses (½ the rate of GC boys)
  • Less likely to commit violent crimes 2 years later

(Chamberlain & Reid, 1998; Eddy, Whaley, & Chamberlain, 2004)

which program components drive the positive results
Which program components drive the positive results?

Delinquency effects mediated by:

  • Supervision
  • Relationship with a mentoring adult
  • Consistent non-harsh discipline
  • Less association with delinquent peers
  • Homework completion

(Eddy, Whaley, & Chamberlain, 2004; Leve & Chamberlain 2005; Leve & Chamberlain, 2007)

implications for policy what can we do to prepare girls to exit jj
Implications for Policy: what can we do to prepare girls to exit JJ?
  • Prevention!Stabilization & permanancy in child welfare placements and educational supports
  • Prior to exit from JJ, implement treatment programs that mediate successful outcomes(supervision, mentoring adult, consistent discipline, non-deviant peers, homework)
  • Consider the consequences of aggregate care (and gender differences)
  • Consider extending JJ and CWS services beyond age 18 (mental health, drug&alcohol, sexual behavior, independent living)
  • Invest resources in adult caregivers and supports
for more information
For more information

Email:

Lesliel@oslc.orgorPattic@oslc.org

Related web address:

MTFC program: http://www.mtfc.com/index.html

OSLC: http://www.oslc.org

Ctr for Research to Practice: http://www.cr2p.org

OR Youth Authority: http://www.oregon.gov/OYA/

Disclosure: Patricia Chamberlain is one of the owners of TFC Consultants Inc which disseminates MTFC to community agencies in the United States and Europe