Since 2013, seven states have engaged in the evidence-based Comprehensive Strategy for Juvenile Justice Systems Improvement Initiative to change their juvenile justice system through legislation. Through this initiative, states also receive implementation assistance to maximize the impact and sustainability of enacted changes. As a result, over half the states have closed secure facilities, choosing instead to fund community alternatives to out-of-home placement. Other state results include decreased court referrals, reductions in youth on probation, and thousands of cases diverted from placement. While legislation and implementation priorities have differed across states, each state identified its own path to improving outcomes for youth and their communities through enhanced training and stakeholder engagement to effectively implement change. This brief summarizes improvement strategies across states, highlighting common themes and reporting early outcomes of the initiative.
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