March | April 2012

News From the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and
Delinquency Prevention

Logo for Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

At the February 10, 2012, meeting of the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, researchers reported on findings from Pathways to Desistance, an OJJDP-supported longitudinal study on serious juvenile offenders. The primary findings of the study to date address:

Photo of  Attorney General Eric Holder and OJJDP Acting Administrator Melodee Hanes.
Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr., chaired the February 2012 meeting of the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. On the right is Melodee Hanes, OJJDP Acting Administrator and vice chair of the council.

  • The decrease in self-reported offending over time by most serious adolescent offenders.
  • The relative inefficacy of longer juvenile incarcerations in decreasing recidivism.
  • The effectiveness of community-based supervision as a component of aftercare for incarcerated youth.
  • The effectiveness of substance abuse treatment in reducing both substance use and offending in this population of offenders.

For more information, see the article entitled "Coordinating Council Meeting Highlights Study on Serious Juvenile Offenders" in this issue.

In other news from the council meeting, Luke Tate, Senior Policy Advisor to the Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), served as moderator for a discussion of the HUD—GreatSchools Partnership. Panelists in the discussion included Maria-Lana Queen, Office of Public and Indian Housing, HUD; Natanya Levioff, GreatSchools; and Iris McLaurin-Southall, District of Columbia Housing Authority.

left quoteWe have budget issues that we have to deal with. We have economic issues that we have to deal with. Yet, what could be more important than the children of this nation? What we do in this regard says an awful lot about who we are as a people and what kind of nation we want to be.right quote

—Attorney General Eric Holder

The intent of the new partnership is to give parents living in public housing or who receive HUD Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) rental assistance greater access to local school information that will help them make more informed decisions about where to send their children to school. GreatSchools, a national nonprofit education resource for parents, offers a range of Web-based resources, including a database of school performance information for more than 200,000 public, charter, and private schools. The Web site also has information on how parents can help their children achieve academic success. HUD and GreatSchools are working with the nation's 3,200 public housing authorities to provide handouts of local school listings and other helpful information to parents receiving housing assistance.

"Whether it be the threat of violence, apathy in schools, or inability to maintain the social fabric, housing choices influence many different factors of a child's life," said Queen. "When you're choosing a home, you're not just choosing a home. Safety challenges, housing challenges, school challenges must be addressed in tandem."

As of mid-February, the HUD–GreatSchools partnership had reached more than 1.9 million households in the HCV rental assistance program and nearly 980,000 households in public housing.

Meetings of the council are open to the public. Visit the Web site to learn more about the council and read minutes from past meetings.

The Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention is an independent body within the executive branch of the federal government operated under the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The council's primary functions are to coordinate federal juvenile delinquency prevention programs, federal programs and activities that detain or care for unaccompanied juveniles, and federal programs relating to missing and exploited children.

The council is made up of 22 members—13 ex officio and affiliate members and 9 practitioners. The ex officio members are: the Attorney General; the Administrator of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Secretaries of the U.S. Departments of Education, Health and Human Services (HHS), Housing and Urban Development, and Labor; the Assistant Secretary of Immigration and Customs Enforcement in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security; the Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy; and the Chief Executive Officer of the Corporation for National and Community Service. Affiliate members are the Secretaries of the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Defense, and the Interior, and the Administrator of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration of HHS. The nine juvenile justice practitioner members are appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Senate Majority Leader, and the President of the United States.