OJJDP has released OJJDP Family Listening Sessions: Executive Summary, a report on the findings from four listening sessions held with families and youth who had direct experiences with the juvenile justice system at the local and state levels. In collaboration with the Campaign for Youth Justice and Education Development Center, Inc., OJJDP convened the listening sessions from March through July 2011. The goal of the sessions was to learn firsthand about the experiences of system-involved families and to explore ways to improve family engagement and ensure better outcomes for children and youth.
Following are some examples of common themes and recommendations highlighted in the report:
OJJDP is using the information gleaned from these listening sessions to strengthen policies and activities (e.g., grantmaking and technical assistance); inform guidance to jurisdictions interested in partnering with youth and families; and raise national awareness about the importance of family engagement in the juvenile justice system. These efforts include OJJDP staff development, Webinars, presentations before key stakeholder groups, the inclusion of family members on specific working groups and committees to ensure that all system reform efforts incorporate the voices of youth and families, and coordination with other federal agencies on identifying and applying effective youth and family engagement strategies and practices.
OJJDP’s new publication, OJJDP Family Listening Sessions: Executive Summary is accessible online. To learn more about other OJJDP efforts to promote family engagement, read "Engaging Families as Valued Partners in the Juvenile Justice System" and “OJJDP Participates in Briefing, Launches Webinar Series on Family Engagement in the Juvenile Justice System” from past issues of OJJDP News @ a Glance.
The Campaign for Youth Justice has released FAMILY Comes First: A Workbook to Transform the Justice System by Partnering with Families. The workbook provides practical tools and resources for juvenile justice system practitioners who are undertaking a family-driven approach to juvenile justice.