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Getting the Genie Back in the Bottle: California's Prison Gulag (Special Report)

| Barry Krisberg

An essay from NCCD president Barry Krisberg on the growth of the prison complex in California and what the state could do about it.

California Cities Gang Prevention Network Bulletin (Bulletin 12)

| Dr. Angela Wolf, Tiffany Morris, Jack Calhoun

NCCD and the National League of Cities' Institute for Youth, Education, and Families (YEF Institute) present the bulletin for the California Cities Gang Prevention Network. This initiative creates a network of major California cities to combat gang violence and victimization.

Evaluating Federal Gang Bills

| Linh Vuong, Fabiana Silva

The Gang Abatement and Prevention Act of 2007 and the Gang Prevention, Intervention, and Suppression Act. expand the current penal code regarding criminal street gangs, resulting in an over-reaching defi nition of both gangs and gang-related crimes. Additionally, they create an entirely new section of penalties pertaining to gang crimes, increasing the enhanced sentences that are already in place. The bills' provisions call for suppression-heavy strategies, increasing punishments for gang crimes, and expanding the types of crimes that can be categorized as such. Years of research and evaluation have shown that these types of suppression strategies are not the solution to the gang problem. Yet, these bills propose more than $1 billion in duplicative suppression, prosecution, and incarceration of "gangs" and "gang members," leaving little money for community-based prevention and intervention programs that have been proven to work.

Massachusetts Department of Children and Families Assessment Field Test Results

| Raelene Freitag, Theresa Healy, MS

From August 1 through September 30, 2008, the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF) field-tested three assessments for use in providing child protective services (CPS) to families. The assessments consist of the assessment of danger and safety,  a risk assessment, and a risk reassessment. The three assessments were developed by DCF in collaboration with the Children’s Research Center (CRC) in 2007. The purpose of the field test was to examine how well the assessments could be conducted under actual field conditions and if they could be effectively completed in conjunction with the family.  The following report summarizes information from the Massachusetts field test of the three CPS assessments.

SDM News

| Children's Research Center

Structured Decision Making News, The Stewards of Change Thought Leadership Symposium Highlights the SDM as a Best Practive in Child Welfare

A Call for Gender Equity for Girls in the Juvenile Justice System

| NCCD Center for Girls and Young Women

Girls are the fastest growing segment of the juvenile justice population. The national picture shows that crime rates are decreasing for both girls and boys, but the rate of decrease has been slower for girls. Nationally, since 1997, incarceration for boys has decreased 18% compared to only 8% for girls. However, in 14 states the female juvenile rate of incarceration has increased more than 30% since 1997. Nationally, girls make up 15% of the incarcerated youth population and as much as 34% in some states. States and local jurisdictions are in need of gender-responsive
interventions to reverse the escalating trends of girls entering into the system.

A Call for Gender Equity for Girls in the Juvenile Justice System

| NCCD Center for Girls and Young Women, National Council on Crime and Delinquency

Girls are the fastest growing segment of the juvenile justice population. The national picture shows that crime rates are decreasing for both girls and boys, but the rate of decrease has been slower for girls. Nationally, since 1997, incarceration for boys has decreased 18% compared to only 8% for girls. However, in 14 states the female juvenile rate of incarceration has increased more than 30% since 1997. Nationally, girls make up 15% of the incarcerated youth population and as much as 34% in some states. States and local jurisdictions are in need of gender-responsive
interventions to reverse the escalating trends of girls entering into the system.

Latino/Hispanic Youth in Oakland (Data Report)

| National Council on Crime and Delinquency

A comprehensive statistical data book that focuses on Latino youth in Oakland, California. This report includes statewide and national demographic data. It offers quantitative and qualitative information on Latino youth to community members, leaders, practitioners, advocacy groups, and policy makers.

Agency Workforce Estimation: A Step Toward More Effective Workload Management

| Dennis Wagner, PhD, Kristen Johnson, PhD, Theresa Healy, MS

Evidence indicates that many child welfare agencies are experiencing workforce shortages. The article reviews recent research findings that link adequate staffing to improved child safety and well-being and outlines simple steps child welfare administrators can take to evaluate and manage agency workload capacity.

Fact Sheet: Girls in Juvenile Justice

| Lawanda Ravoira

Facts about pathways for girls into the juvenile justice system and data suggesting that girls' arrest and incarceration are tied to differential treatment.

Interpersonal and Physical Dating Violence among Teens (FOCUS)

| Antoinette Davis

The death of a 16 year-old girl, shot and killed by her 17 year-old boyfriend in Oakland, California, epitomizes the potential of interpersonal violence to escalate to a tragic extreme (Contra Costa Times, 2008). This Focus attempts to bring to light various aspects of a little-studied issue of critical importance, especially to youth.

The Declining Number of Youth in Custody in the Juvenile Justice System

| Antoinette Davis, Chris Tsukida, Susan Marchionna, Barry Krisberg

During the last decade, custody rates for youth in the US have declined significantly. This Focus describes this trend by race/ethnicity, gender, and state. Measured by arrest rates, juvenile crime, especially serious crime, has also decreased during this period, contrary to a prevalent misconception that young people pose a growing threat to society.