- Helpful Information
The goal of the Office of Youth Services is to improve outcomes for youth in the child welfare system and other vulnerable youth. Specifically, the office supports service delivery systems that move youth towards academic success, safe and stable housing, employment, permanent connections with supportive adults and healthy lifestyle behaviors.
The Office of Youth Services also publishes and disseminates a newsletter periodically to keep everyone abreast of developments as that office expands its work with youth in both the juvenile delinquency and child welfare systems. You can find the newsletters, including the January 2016 and March 2016 editions – and go to DCF youth services for future editions as well.Visit Website
Numbered memos are used to convey child welfare related policies or procedures which includes child welfare licensing updates. They include directives on new regulations, clarification of existing procedures or changes in state statutes or Departmental policies which affect the operation of child welfare programs.
Information Memos contain material which is strictly informational and time-limited. They include announcements about budget allocations, provide details on quality assurance reviews/results, give details on new pamphlets or announce public hearings.Visit Website
Information relevant to the Wisconsin Statewide Automated Child Welfare Information System (eWiSACWIS).Visit Website
- Child Welfare Resources
The Harvard University Center on the Developing Child publication titled Applying the Science of Child Development in Child Welfare Systems, is a very readable overview of the research about the importance of the early years of life, the impact of trauma and toxic stress on development, how stress is often reflected in a parents’ response to intervention efforts, and suggested “big picture” policy ideas that spring from applying the science of child development.Visit Website
The National Juvenile Justice Network and the Juvenile Justice Information Exchange released a new summary, Dual-Status Youth and Federal Initiatives – in September as an overview of research and federal initiatives related to improving our systems and practices in working with dual-status youth – those youth that have a “foot in both worlds” of child welfare and juvenile justice. This is a handy summary of some new information as well as providing links to other resources (many of which are in other locations on the WJJN site).Visit Website
The following products have been developed by sites that have engaged in a dual status youth initiative guided by technical assistance, and offer valuable guidance and resources from successful, committed, and innovative jurisdictions.
Understanding Child Maltreatment and Juvenile Delinquency: From Research to Effective Program, Practice, and Systemic Solutions
By Janet K. Wiig and Cathy Spatz Widom, with John A. Tuell (Child Welfare League of America, 2003)Visit Website
By Jessica Heldman (Child Welfare League of America, 2006)Visit Website
The National Council on Crime and Delinquency (NCCD) has completed a study in Los Angeles in which they developed a risk tool to use for youth involved in the child welfare system to predict the likelihood of future delinquency involvement. With some limitations, NCCD was able to identify a 10-item tool that did a good job separating youth into low-medium-high risk categories for subsequent delinquency, and the information gathered in the tool may be informative as counties work to better integrate child welfare and delinquency prevention and intervention efforts.Visit Website
- Child Welfare Reform
The Center for Juvenile Justice Reform supports and educates leaders across systems of care to advance a balanced, multi-systems approach to improving outcomes for, and promoting the positive development of, youth at risk of juvenile justice involvement.Visit Website
The Juvenile Justice Information Exchange has created a pretty complete website on dual status youth that includes links to resources, publications, emerging trends, research, and contacts related to working with dual-status youth – those youth that have had or still have a “foot in both the jj and child welfare systems”. Some of these resources are noted in other places on the WJJN site, but this is a good “one-stop” shop for information.Visit Website
Jefferson County Moving Forward with Dual Status Youth Project
Currently, 76% of the youth being served in the Jefferson County Juvenile Justice system have been identified as “Dual Status Youth,” meaning that they currently have, or have had in the past, some type of child welfare involvement in their lives. In August 2016, Jefferson County was chosen as one of six sites in the nation to receive a technical assistance grant to improve policies and practices around our work with Dual Status Youth. In November, staff members from the JJ and CPS Intake Unit, ongoing Child Protection Unit and ongoing Juvenile Justice Unit joined with our Assistant District Attorney, Juvenile Judge and representatives of the Department of Youth and Family Services to attend a comprehensive training put on by the Robert F. Kennedy Foundation to learn about the unique needs of these kids, as well as how we can take a critical look at our programming and identify ways to improve our practice surrounding our Dual Status kids.
In March 2017, representatives from each of the units who attended the original training met with the Director of the Office of Youth Services to take a closer look at our processes and practices right here in Jefferson County and what we can do to move our programming forward. The meeting was incredibly successful, and the energy around the process to create new programming is dynamic. Sub-committees are currently being formed to start this challenging yet exciting work. There will be more to come shortly on what our sub-committees have accomplished and what that means for our dually identified youth and families moving forward.