Describe a juvenile detention center, and its effectiveness

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M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As far as juvenile law goes, the juvenile detention facility or center (JDC, JDF), colloquially known as the "juvi jail", is a state-funded residential facility for minors who have been judged for committing a crime, are awaiting judgement, or placement in a state facility.

Depending on the state and county, juvenile halls are no different than a controlled dormitory with multiple beds and a strict code of conduct and discipline. It is basically geared to give these youths the structure and support systems that they may have lacked; often this lack of structure and support is what drive youths to become disruptive in the first place. 

For this reason, this confinement may actually beneficial for youths who have not yet entered a dangerous criminal phase, and who can still be molded by the right programs. The programs include:

  • Counseling
  • Chaplain/religious exposure
  • Anger issues
  • Mental health assessment
  • Career and family planning
  • Tutoring
  • Problem negotiation

These programs may not be available in every state nor every county due to state funding, but the idea is that the youths become exposed to opportunities that their communities and closest support systems would never provide. 

This is also beneficial to parents of uncontrollable children and who lack the parenting skills that they need to supervise and care for their kids.