Code of Practice Committee

The number of youth committed to short-term or long-term secure residential facilities across the United States decreased from 86,814 youth in 2007 to 43,580 in 2017. As a result, more youth are being served in communities and there is an increased concentration of higher need and higher risk youth in secure residential facilities. Young people entering the juvenile justice systems’ secure facilities have arrived with multiple challenges, including mental health issues, exposure to traumatic events, substance use, sexually reactive behaviors, and developmental disabilities. Deep-end, secure Juvenile justice system facilities have become the last resort for localities that lack the resources and/or services to meet the needs of these youth in a community-based setting.

Currently, there are no national standards for crisis intervention, violence and harm prevention, or any type of universal behavior response training. In response to the field’s needs, in November 2019 the Council of Juvenile Justice Administrators (CJJA) and partner organizations published the “CJJA Position Paper: Code of Practice for Harm and Violence Prevention and Comprehensive Intervention Strategies for Juvenile Justice Systems” (http://cjja.net/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/CJJA-Position- Paper-Code-of-Practice.pdf). To set these concepts in motion, CJJA and its partners created a Code of Practice Committee to closely examine best practices in key areas and work to develop national standards to guide juvenile justice practices.

Committee Description and Goals: The CJJA Code of Practice emphasizes the need for facility safety which involves reducing the use of all forms of restraints (physical, mechanical, and chemical) and reducing or eliminating the use of isolation. This working committee examines data and research on best practices; reviews existing policies and procedures; discusses the most effective practices in the field. The committee’s main purpose is to develop national standards to reflect the least restrictive and most effective intervention strategies for each of the identified practice areas. Establishing national standards will provide guidance to juvenile justice leaders and staff with the goal of encouraging staff to employ effective strategies when working with youth and families. Ultimately, setting national expectations will improve the safety of facilities and positively impact youth and family outcomes.

NOTE: If you are interest in becoming a member of CJJA and/or this committee please contact Charity Brenstuhl via email at charity.brenstuhl@cjja.net

Committee Founded: September 2020

Meeting Frequency: Monthly

Resources:

  • CJJA Position Paper: Code of Practice for Harm and Violence Prevention and Comprehensive Intervention Strategies for Juvenile Justice Systems (November 2019).  Code of Practice
Simone Marstiller, Code of Practice Committee Chair

Simone Marstiller, Code of Practice Committee Chair

DJJ Secretary, Florida

Prior to being appointed as DJJ Secretary, Simone Marstiller was Of Counsel with Gunster, Yoakley, Stewart, P.A., where her practice areas included appellate consulting and litigation, government affairs, procurement, and ethics and elections.  She joined Gunster in 2017 after retiring from the First District Court of Appeal, where she served as a judge for six years.  She previously served as General Counsel and later Interim Secretary for the Department of Management Services.  After DMS, Secretary Marstiller served as Deputy Chief of Staff under Governor Jeb Bush and was later appointed State Chief Information Officer by Governor Bush. She then became Secretary for the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. Attorney General Bill McCollum later appointed her Associate Deputy Attorney General for the State of Florida and General Counsel for the Office of Attorney General.  Simone was born in Monrovia, Liberia, and grew up in St. Petersburg, Florida.  She earned her Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Stetson University and her Juris Doctor, cum laude from Stetson University College of Law.

 

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