Mission: To ensure that all youth receive timely, professional services to assess their individual strengths and needs, and to make referrals for services to prevent juvenile delinquency.
The Juvenile Assessment Center (JAC) is the central receiving and intake facility for all arrested juveniles in Broward County. The JAC is a 24 hour 7 day a week processing facility for arrested youth. Youth brought to the JAC by law enforcement officers are fingerprinted, photographed and booked. In addition, youth receive screenings to determine level of their risk to the public, and assessments to identify any mental health and substance abuse disorders that may underlie episodes of delinquency. JAC will provide short-term holding and assume temporary custody of juvenile offenders detained in Broward County until release to parent/guardian, the Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), a shelter facility or until other appropriate placement is provided. BSO Department of Detention personnel will oversee to security of staff, employees, juvenile clients and on-site provider personnel.
Juvenile Assessment Team (JAT)
Mission: To prevent future delinquent behavior and arrests of at-risk youth served by the Juvenile Assessment Team. To provide comprehensive assessment of behavioral/mental health and substance abuse issues and assist in making community referrals to address needs and increase protective factors for youth and families served.
Our goal is to provide comprehensive assessment and referral services for youth who indicate risk factors during the JAC screening process. The JAT uses an evidenced based mental health/substance abuse assessment instrument, completes a psychosocial evaluation, and makes collateral contacts with guardians and Juvenile Probation Officers. The JAT and the families we serve share a common aim, which is to help our youth in Broward county transition toward a hopeful and productive young adult life.
Community Justice Program (CJP)
Mission: The Community Justice Program is a voluntary program (45-90 days) established to provide Civil Citation (pre-arrest) and Diversion (post arrest) options for juvenile offenders who reside in Broward County. The Community Justice Program provides pre and post arrest diversion services to youth ages 7 to 17 that are referred for criminal offenses allegedly committed within Broward County. Juveniles enter the voluntary program via a pre-arrest Civil Citation referral issued by a law enforcement officer or via a post arrest diversion referral from the State Attorney’s Office. The program also attends to the needs of the crime victims (associated with the juvenile’s case) and the community through the implementation of restorative justice principles.
The goals of the Community Justice Program are to accomplish the following:
- Decrease recidivism
- Reduce youth risk factors
- Provide and link youth to appropriate community services to meet their social, educational and behavioral health needs
- Youth will achieve/maintain positive school performance, attendance and behavior
- Strengthen and improve family relationships
- Strengthen youth attachment to community
- Address victim needs for counseling, reparation and restitution
- Address community needs for safety
Mission: All youth who have committed a qualifying minor first-time, second or third time misdemeanor offense will have the opportunity to participate in pre-arrest civil citation program without being arrested. Rather than issuing an arrest, police officers will issue the juvenile a civil citation where the youth has the option of entering into a voluntary program. Broward County Justice Services is the coordinating entity for this countywide process. During enrollment, youth will receive an assessment and application of appropriate, targeted interventions without the stigma of arrest. Program participation ranges from 45-90 days. Upon successful completion of the Juvenile Civil Citation Program, no entry will be made into criminal databases which may be released even if the record is sealed or expunged.