Cis 115 Treatment Programs


Juvenile Delinquent Treatment Programs

Mountain State University


What treatment program works best for rehabilitating youth delinquents The aim of this

paper will be to review various treatments, their impact, and make recommendations for

rehabilitation treatments and areas for future research.

Juvenile Delinquent Treatment Programs

Juvenile crime can alter the life of the victim and the offender forever. Many
People disagree on how to handle crimes committed by youth offenders. Should they be treated
as an adult or a child What should be the consequences of the crime How can we
prevent the youth of American from committing crime These are all great questions
and there are many correct answers. Crime is not easily defined. For every crime there
are a set of circumstances and events that lead up to the crime being carried out. How
many youths commit crime According to the U.S. Department of Justice (2008), ???In 2008, there were 6,318 arrests for every 100,000 youths ages 10 through 17 in the United States??? (para. 3).
Elements for Successful Programs
According to the Office of Independent Ombudsman for the Texas Youth Commission (2008), there are five common elements of successful anti-gang initiatives which include, ???leadership, quality of information, prompt and appropriate management of behaviors, highly structured, and commitment to maximize staff resources??? (Office of Independent Ombudsman for the Texas Youth Commission, 2008). I believe these five elements are beneficial not only for anti-gang initiatives but juvenile delinquent treatment programs.
There are many different treatment programs aiming to prevent juvenile delinquency.
Many states programs attempt early intervention and funding for community initiatives has allowed some independent groups to solve problems in new ways. According to Einstein Law (2008), the most effective programs are education, recreation, community involvement, prenatal and infancy home visitation by nurses, parent-child interaction training program, bullying prevention, prevention programs within the juvenile justice system, Nebraska correctional youth facility, ending repeat offences and functional family therapy.
???Most effective youthful offender programs include in-depth evaluation, screening and
assessment; daily scheduling; point system discipline; positive behavioral support therapy; and education, including literacy, GED preparation and computer literacy??? (Hess, 2004, p. 359).
According to the University of Pittsburgh (n.d.), ???Multisystemic Therapy has shown promise as a cost-effective strategy for decreasing the number of incarcerated offenders while reducing their antisocial behavior, and it is the only treatment to demonstrate short-term and long-term efficacy with chronic, serious, and violent juvenile offenders??? (p. 3). Multisystemic Therapy interventions are child focused, family centered, and directed toward solving multiple problems across the numerous contexts in which youths are embedded and interventions are tailored towards specific needs (n.d.).
In theory, many people think that if someone commits a crime one time that is the best
time to try a rehabilitation program in order to reduce further crime in life. However, research shows that 70% of youths who are arrested once, are never arrested again (Hess, p. 399). Therefore, based on the facts, the money available for prevention programs should target repeat offenders not first time offenders.
Ineffective Programs
Juvenile treatment programs that have had the least success and proven to be ineffective are scare tactics, juvenile boot camp, and scared straight programs (Einstein Law, 2008). While these treatment programs goal was to ensure juveniles knew that crime would not be tolerated and organized to install fear there was no correlation with decreasing crime. In fact, according to Hess (2004) youth that had been placed in the adult system actually had a higher recidivism rate than similar juveniles placed in juvenile detention facilities. Juveniles placed in adult jails also had a higher rate of being abused by other inmates and guards (2004).
Another program shown to be ineffective is the DARE program which stands for Drug Abuse Resistance Education. According to Hanson (2007), ???DARE is not only ineffective, but also sometimes counterproductive. That is, students who graduate from DARE are sometimes more likely than others to drink or do drugs??? (para. 3).
Future Research
Our nation needs to put efforts towards the 8% problem. According to the U.S. Department of Justice (2001). “8 percent of the juveniles were arrested repeatedly (a minimum of 4 times within a 3 year period) and were responsible for 55% of repeat cases” (p. 1). If we can find out what program rehabilitates the youths who commit over 55% of all crimes we can change the crime rate of the nation. “Even a modest reduction in recidivism rates for the 8% problem group could result in major, long-term savings” (2001, p. 2).

Hanson, D. J. (2007). Effectiveness of DARE. Retrieved from
Einstein Law. (2008). Juvenile delinquency prevention. Retrieved from
Hess, K.M. (2004). Juvenile Justice. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.
Office of Independent Ombudsman for the Texas Youth Commission. (2008). Gang Prevention
and Intervention Best Practices and Recommendations for the Texas Youth Commission.
Retrieved from
Stone, S. (n.d.). Changing nature of juvenile offenders. Retrieved from not yet
U.S. Department of Justice. (2008). Juvenile arrest trend rates. Retrieved from
U.S. Department of Justice (2001). OJJDP fact sheet. Retrieved February 1, 2010 from
University of Pittsburgh. (n.d.). Effectiveness of treatment for violent juvenile delinquents.
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