ERIC Number: ED461681
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Jul
Minorities and the Juvenile Justice System. Research Summary.
Pope, Carl E.; Feyerherm, William
This report concludes a 15-month research project examining the role that minority status (African American, Hispanic, Asian Pacific Islander, Native American) plays in the processing of youth by the juvenile justice system. The research began with a review and summary of existing research on the issue. A strategy was then developed for identifying existing programs and policies that may have dealt with differential processing of minority youth. Finally, a number of databases were examined to identify methodological problems associated with previous work in this area and to understand the dynamics of juvenile processing. Policy and program recommendations were then developed to address the issue of disproportionate involvement of minorities in the juvenile justice system. Research evidence did demonstrate that race effects, or at least a mixed pattern of race effects, are evident in juvenile justice processing. A survey of states indicated that 27 of 33 states replying did not have any program specifically targeting minorities or working to ensure equity in juvenile processing. A decision-tree model was developed to show the points in the juvenile justice system in which processing inequities could occur. This model makes clear the multiple points at which minority status can influence outcomes for youth. The first step in developing policies to combat differential processing would be to educate local communities and juvenile justice agencies. Recommendations are made for systematic monitoring and self-assessment by juvenile justice agencies, with staff training and other strategies as local situations warrant. (SLD)
Descriptors: Adolescents, American Indians, Asian Americans, Blacks, Correctional Institutions, Delinquency, Ethnic Groups, Hispanic Americans, Juvenile Justice, Law Enforcement, Minority Groups, Models, Racial Differences, Racial Discrimination, Urban Youth
Juvenile Justice Clearinghouse, P.O. Box 6000, Rockville, MD 20849. Tel: 800-638-8736 (Toll Free).
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Department of Justice, Washington, DC. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.