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Realigning Responses: Cutting Edge Juvenile Diversion Programs

Thursday, February 7, 2019 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Boston Bar Association - 16 Beacon Street, Boston, MA


As the recent BBJ Juvenile Justice, Special Edition highlights, prevention and early intervention in a young person’s development can make a great impact in diverting at-risk youth from entering the juvenile justice system.  Diversion programs that seek to support youth have become more frequent in response to widespread acknowledgement that a “justice system for youth that is responsive to their developmental needs and focused on their practical rehabilitation” will serve all members of our community.  While there are common goals among diversion programs, the methods differ in a number of significant ways.


Hear from the experts about a variety of diversion programs that exhibit various models, including New Zealand's innovative approaches to juvenile justice and what we can learn from their creative approach.  Programs may vary in significant ways: target different youth populations and employ a variety of intake models, processing procedures, adjudication procedures, options for community-based services, consequences for unsuccessful participation, and benefits for successful completion. Panelists will discuss the strengths of their particular program, issues that arise when implementing a particular diversion model, and how collaboration between criminal justice and social service partners can work to improve long-term outcomes and public safety.

This program is supported in part by the Burnes Innovation in Service Fund. The fund was established at the Boston Bar Foundation in 2018 through a generous gift by Nonnie and Richard Burnes. The purpose of the Fund is to support Boston Bar Association projects that leverage the unique resources of the bar to develop and advance innovative solutions for addressing important problems in our community. It is being used this year to support the Boston Bar Service Innovation Project, which focuses on dismantling the school-to-prison pipeline.


For more information on Communities for Restorative Justice (C4RJ), please visit their website.



Sponsoring Section/Committee(s):




Taylor Richard


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