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Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative: Insights from the Annual Results Report

The Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI™) a nationwide effort of local and state juvenile justice systems, initiated and supported by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, to eliminate unnecessary and inappropriate use of juve-
nile secure detention and to reduce racial disparities. Begun in 1992, JDAI has grown to
become the most widely replicated juvenile justice reform initiative in the United States,
reaching youth in more than 300 local jurisdictions across 39 states and the District of
Columbia. JDAI sites submit annual results reports to the Foundation for two primary
purposes: (1) to gauge the progress of their own JDAI collaboratives on an annual basis
for the benefit of local system stakeholders; and (2) to generate initiative-wide aggregate
measures and comparisons among sites to deepen our understanding of the overall impact
of the detention reform movement.

Since 2009, JDAI has summarized these aggregate measures of progress to share with the
JDAI network and the public at large. In recognition of JDAI’s 25-year milestone, this
document presents the first results reports’ analysis that draws on data from multiple years
— 2008 through 2016. The results reports provide evidence that JDAI sites have achieved
significant reductions in both juvenile incarceration and juvenile crime; and in most sites,
those reductions have been sustained or deepened over time. Yet the results reports also
indicate that despite sites’ best efforts, racial and ethnic disparities have persisted or wors-
ened overall; and in some sites, the momentum of detention reform appears to have slowed
in recent years. In addition to sharing insights from this longitudinal perspective, this doc-
ument reflects on the strengths and weaknesses of the results reports as a tool to advance
data-driven practices across the detention reform movement. Finally, this document sets
forth some new strategic goals for improving the current results reports, with new tools and
strategies designed to help JDAI sites do better, innovate and sustain the improvements
they have achieved through 25 years of JDAI.


Source: The Annie E. Casey Foundation (2017). Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative Insights From the Annual Results Reports.