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Post- release mentoring program for youth offenders

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Congressional District
Past Project Period End Date
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2015, $487,578)

The Justice Department's grant-making components have created a streamlined approach for federally recognized Tribes, Tribal consortia, Alaska Native villages and corporations, as well as authorized tribal designees to apply for Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 funding opportunities. The Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation (CTAS) serves as a single solicitation for existing tribal government-specific grant programs administered by the Office of Justice Programs (OJP), the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) and the Office on Violence Against Women (OVW). The CTAS solicitation is designed to assist tribes with addressing crime and public safety issues in a comprehensive manner. The CTAS grant-application process was inspired by and developed after consultation with tribal leaders, including sessions at the Justice Department's Tribal Nations Listening Session in 2009, and has been updated based on continued tribal consultations and listening sessions. The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) provides awards under CTAS Purpose Area 9--Tribal Youth Program (TYP) to federally recognized tribes to develop and implement programs that support and enhance Tribal efforts to prevent and control juvenile delinquency and strengthen juvenile justice system for American Indian/Alaska Native youth.

The Colorado River Indian Tribes proposes to reduce juvenile offender recidivism on the Colorado River Indian Reservation and thereby reduce the overall level of crime committed by Tribal Youth. The goal is to reorient youthful offenders away from criminal behavior to avoid becoming adult offenders. In order to achieve this goal, the tribes are proposing the establishment of a Post Release Mentoring (PRM) Program coupled with development of a classification capability for juveniles upon initial incarceration. The funding will allow for creation of two positions; Post Release Mentoring Coordinator and Juvenile Classification Coordinator.

In 2012, the average length of incarceration of tribal youth was 107 days and 70% who aged out (turned 18) of the juvenile system committed crimes as an adult within the first six months and were processed into the adult detention system. In 2013 the Juvenile Detention Center (JDC) tested a new program they developed called the Post-Release Mentoring Program (PRM). The goal of RPM was to reduce the high recidivism rate and reduce the number of tribal youth who had spent time in the (JDC) then turn 18 and begin committing crimes as adults. This was accomplished by providing an action plan and assigning a Juvenile Detention Officer as a mentor for each juvenile offender upon release from detention.

The JDC tested their program using detention officers who volunteered their time. By the end of 2013, the amount of tribal youth offender arrests decreased by 13% and the types of violent crimes for which tribal youth had been arrested decreased from 61% in 2012 to 26% in 2013. The average length of stay decreased from 107 days to 32 days. In 2014, inadequate funding caused a reduction in JDC staffing levels and the PRM Program was “shelved” until funding for the program could be found.

Incarcerated juveniles will be assessed by the Classification Coordinator at intake for public and institutional risk, emotional and mental health needs, suicide risk, and education and programming needs. The Classification Coordinator will follow their progress throughout their incarceration phase, ensuring they receive the appropriate counseling, education, and programming. Upon release, youth offenders will be assigned to the Mentoring Program Coordinator who will act as a support system for the youth, ensuring that any probationary, educational, or behavioral health needs or requirements are met and the youth has a means to be successful and stay out of detention.

Date Created: September 16, 2015